CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Starting Oct. 1, public utilities and people burning in conjunction with commercial, manufacturing, mining or like activities must have a burning permit from the Division of Forestry to burn during daylight hours. The permits, which allow burning during the otherwise prohibited hours of 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., are required throughout the fall forest fire season that runs from Oct. 1 through Dec. 31. A permit is required for each site where this type of burning is taking place. Permits, which cost $125 each, are issued by local Division of Forestry offices.
Private landowners clearing large amounts of vegetative materials and those burning during the course of agricultural activities must have a permit to burn during the day, but are exempt from the $125 permit fee. Permits are not issued for residential burning of small amounts of yard debris such as leaves, branches, or yard clippings. This material should be burned in small piles between the hours of 5 p.m. and 7 a.m.
Permit holders are required by law to confine and control their fires. If those fires escape, the permit holder will be charged with a misdemeanor and, if found guilty, will be fined between $100 and $1,000. He or she also must pay a $200 civil penalty. The state forester may revoke a burning permit if a fire is not properly controlled.
To find out where you can obtain a burning permit, visit the Division of Forestry’s website at www.wvforestry.com
for the office nearest you.
Leslie Fitzwater, Public Information Specialist
304-957-9342 or 304-541-8102