--> Richmond VA > Fire

Last Updated: 2010-01-11

Open Pit Incinerator (Trench Burner)

Permit Holder Guideline #31D

PERMIT TITLE: Open Pit Incinerator (Trench Burner)

CODE SECTION: (Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code) 307.2

FEE: $80.00 (Check payable to the City of Richmond)

SCOPE: Open burning for land clearing purposes.


REQUIREMENTS: Permit holder agrees to abide by the Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code and any special stipulations noted on permit, as well as the following


  1. Personnel shall be in attendance at all times during burning operations.
  2. All open pit burning shall take place a minimum of 500 feet from any occupied structure excluding construction offices on the same property.
  3. Pit walls shall be essentially vertical and the pit shall have the following dimensions:
    1. Length - No longer than blower manifold
    2. Width - Eight (8) feet
    3. Depth - at least ten (10) feet
  4. The fan housing and manifold shall be assembled and maintained so as to prevent air leakage and the nozzle alignment shall provide a curtain of air in a plane aimed approximately two (2) to three (3) feet below the top of the pit edge opposite the manifold.
  5. At all times that there is a fire in the pit except for a twenty minute start-up period; the blower shall be run at a speed sufficient to create an air curtain of sufficient velocity to deflect combustion gases downward into the pit.
  6. Building and demolition materials, paper, used lumber, trade waste, crank case oil, plastic, impregnated wood and other materials producing dense smoke shall not be burned.
  7. Toxic or hazardous materials or containers for such materials shall not be burned.
  8. Materials containing friable or non-friable asbestos shall be separated and not burned in the pit.
  9. Materials containing friable or non-friable asbestos shall be separated and not burned in the pit.
  10. Sellable timber and pulpwood shall not be burned.
  11. Stumps to be burned shall be free of dirt.
  12. At no time shall the pit be filled in such a manner that material to be burned is above the level of the air curtain. Materials shall remain at least three (3) feet below the air curtain.
  13. Prior to removing ashes from the pit, they shall first be soaked with water. No fires or burning embers are allowed outside the pit. Ashes removed from the pit shall be disposed of in such a manner as to prevent their becoming airborne.
  14. Possession of this permit shall in no way limit the liability of the owner or operator for any damage that might result from the burning.
  15. A bulldozer, and/or water truck and an operator shall be on site at all times during burning.
  16. On notification from the State Air Pollution Control Board that an air pollution episode is in progress; all burning shall be stopped until further notice.

Violation of any of the above requirements may result in suspension of the permit.

Contact Information:

Fire Department
City of Richmond
201 E. Franklin St.
Richmond, VA
23219 USA
Map It
Ask Fire
Phone: (804)646-2500

This is a print version of the webpage. The navigation of the site has been removed through the print css. If you require a printout of the page as it looks in your browser, please use screen capture.