Denver Fire cracks down on backyard fire pits

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While fire pits may look tempting at the store – Denver Fire is reminding people you can’t bring them home.

“It’s actually on the code in Denver Fire that you are not permitted to have any type of open burning devices,” said Melissa Taylor, a Denver Fire spokesperson and firefighter.

That includes built-in fire pits, portable ones and chimineas. None of these are allowed under any circumstances.

“We’re certainly not trying to rain on anybody’s parade,” said Taylor. “We’re just trying to make sure that we’re safe.”

She says in the dry summer months, there are too many things just waiting to catch fire.

The law against these kinds of fire pits has been on the books in Denver for about a decade, but Denver Fire says most people have no idea they’re breaking any rules.

“What makes the challenge even greater is that you can go right down the street to Home Depot in the City and County of Denver and purchase a fire pit or purchase a chiminea,” said Taylor. “So if you’re new to the area -- of course you’d think, ‘Why wouldn’t I buy a fire pit for my backyard?”

There is one exception – only in the case of cooking. You’re allowed to have a grill.

Denver Fire says it takes this rule very seriously.

“It can, in a worst case scenario, result in a fine of 999 dollars,” said Taylor.

Though in the last year, fewer than a dozen people have gotten tickets.

“The resident will have every opportunity to put the fire out and we’ll go on our merry way,” said Taylor.

This law is only in effect for the City and County of Denver. Some metro Denver area counties do allow fire pits, so it’s best to check with your local fire department to find out the rules in your area.

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