Home » Departments » Fire » Fire Marshal's Office » Burn Permits


   In order to conduct an open burn or bon fire within the City of Elizabethton a burn permit must be issued. EFD does reserve the right to deny a permit or to extinguish or cause to be extinguished any open-burning that is being conducted regardless of if it meets the parameters of these guidelines.
   Any open-burn that is offensive or objectionable because of smoke or odor emissions or when atmospheric conditions or local circumstances make such fires hazardous, shall be prohibited. If any complaint of smoke is received, the open-burn will be extinguished regardless of if it is being conducted within the scope of these guidelines.
   Any open-burning that takes place inside the City of Elizabethton has to meet the following guidelines:
  • Burning may consist of any dry agricultural product (i.e. leaves, grass, brush or untreated wood). No shingles, tires, copper wires, or household garbage may be burnt.
  • Open-burning must take place a minimum of 50 feet from any structure.
  • The open-burn must be constantly supervised until the fire is completely out.
  • Have adequate means to control and extinguish the fire (i.e. garden hose, extinguisher, or heavy equipment).
  • The weather conditions have to be suitable for burning (low wind).
  • Must be able to call 911 quickly if unable to control fire.
   A recreational fire does not require a permit. A recreational fire is defined as an outdoor fire burning materials other than rubbish where the fuel being burned is not contained in an incinerator, outdoor fireplace, portable fireplace or BBQ pit and has a total fuel area of 3 feet or less in diameter and 2 feet or less in height.
Recreational fires shall not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material which could spread to a structure.
All other conditions within these guidelines shall be met.

     To obtain a permit call the fire department at (423)542-5421. Based upon weather conditions and other factors a permit will be issued on a DAILY basis. If you plan to burn several days, you will need to call each day.

   Any damage that occurs as a result of the open-burn will be the responsibility of the individual that is conducting the open-burn.

***The Fire Marshall has the authority to issue a BURNING BAN anytime the condition requires it, and at anytime deny anyone from conducting an open-burn, if in his opinion, the conditions are not safe

   There is no need for individuals to obtain a burn permit from the State Forestry Service if they are burning inside the City limits. If you live in the county, you will need to call the TN State Forestry Service to be issued a burn permit. You can reach them by calling (423)725-3281. For more information about safe burning practices, when and what you can burn, or to obtain an online burn permit, please visit

Fire Dept.: Use caution when burning brush
Control burn-1control burn-2