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September 25, 2021

Burn permits required as of May 1

Restrictions apply in South Bay counties

Starting May 1, a permit from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CalFire) is required for any outdoor open burning in Santa Clara, Alameda, Contra Costa and the western portions of Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties.

The permit is required in CalFire’s State Responsibility Area within these counties, including unincorporated, rural lands as well as properties covered with grass, brush and timber, says a press release from CalFire.

The press release listed the following guidelines for outdoor burning:

– Those who conduct open burning must keep the fire size within the issued permit requirements at all times.

– All open burning permit requirements include continual monitoring of the fire by an adult, a minimum clearance of at least 10 feet to bare mineral soil around the fire, adequate control resources (tools, water, etc.) and do not burn on a windy day.

– Failure to maintain control of an open fire will result in the permit being voided and the permit holder charged with the possibility of being responsible for fire suppression cost, civil damages and or criminal charges.

– CalFire’s debris burning safety video can be viewed at

“Open burning requires local landowners to do their due diligence to ensure they are meeting all conditions set forth by authorizing agencies prior to conducting an open burn,” CalFire Chief Jake Hess said.

For more information about burn permits or wildfire safety, visit your local CalFire facility or visit

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