Outdoor Fire Regulations


Bonfires such as the annual Christmas tree burning are large in scale with significant crowds.  The Town Selectmen authorize the Head of the Fire Department to issue one (1) permit for this purpose per year.  The fires are located on town land, ignited and maintained by the Fire Department.  Non-fire personnel shall not light bonfires on public or private land without authorization by Selectmen and the Head of the Fire Department.

Open Fires:

Open fires are allowed from January 15th to May 1st.  This type of fire requires Fire Department Dispatch notification and shall only occur from 6:00 am to 4:00 pm.  Dispatch can be contacted using the non-emergency number at (781) 631-1212.  Dispatch will check the fire index issued by the Forest Warden and allow the fire when conditions permit it.  Wind and precipitation are two of the criteria the forest warden use in rating each day.  This type of fire falls under the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) which requires a minimum distance of 75 feet from any structure.  Open burning is limited to brush (no milled lumber, trash, stumps or leaves).

Cooking Fires:

Fires in devices used primarily for cooking such as hibachis’, grills, fire pits and smokers do not require a permit. Cooking fires shall be limited to 3 feet in diameter and 2 feet in height. Nuisance calls relating to outdoor fires will be investigated for but not limited to:

  • Size and saftey
  • Fire use
  • Smoke travel
  • Presence of extingushing method
  • Person 18 years or older present

Devereux/Stramski Beach:

Cooking fires on provided hibachis’ are allowed.  Permits can be obtained through the Parks and Recreation Department.  All other types of fires are prohibited.

Goldthwait Beach:

Permits can be obtained through the Goldthwait Reservation with notification to Fire Department Dispatch at (781) 631-1212.  Fires in designated burn areas only.

All Other Private Beaches:

Recreational fires 4 feet or smaller by members and or owners of beaches, with notification to Fire Department Dispatch.  All fires are prohibited from decks, balconies, and porches with the exceptions of:

  • Single family dwellings can have grills, smokers and hibachis'
  • Gas cooking appliances piped and installed under manufacturers specifications, all dwellings
  • All of the above fires shall have a means to extinguish them, such as a garden hose or fire extinguisher
  • All fires shall be monitored by a person 18 years or older from the time it is lit to the complete extinguishment