Division of Forestry Outdoor Burning Laws
The Kentucky Division of Forestry is mandated by law to “provide for organized fire protection.” This mandate is carried out through wildland fire detection, suppression and law enforcement carried out by nine districts located throughout the state. The division supplements its fire suppression efforts through cooperation with rural fire departments by providing them with training, equipment and vehicles. The division also utilizes Department of Corrections crews and Kentucky National Guard personnel and equipment during fire emergencies. These activities are funded in part by a county assessment of 2 cents for each timberland acre.
- During fire seasons, it is illegal to burn anything within 150 feet of any woodland or brushland between the hours of 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Spring Forest Fire Hazard Season: Feb. 15 – April 30.
- Fall Forest Fire Hazard Season: Oct. 1 – Dec. 15.
Open burning regulations are enforced by the Division for Air Quality. It is illegal to burn garbage or any other materials, except natural plant matter, such as brush and woody debris. Visit the Division for Air Quality Web site for more information.
Before conducting any outdoor burning, citizens should check with their local fire department and county government to find out about restrictions and local ordinances.
Forest Protection Laws – KRS 149.010 – KRS 149.991
Forest protection laws place the primary responsibility of protecting Kentucky’s forestland on the Division of Forestry. Some of the areas covered by this law include: fire hazard seasons, collection of fire suppression costs, authority of forest wardens, collection of timberland assessment and wildland arson.