Burn Permits

Online Burn Permits
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Effective June 1, 2022 we are using the burn permit system from the Maine Forest Service.
Please click here to obtain a free burn permit.
We no longer issue permits through the Warden's Report system.

General Information


Residents can obtain a free online burn permit each day when the fire danger is either low or moderate. Permits are issued automatically by the system.


All Maine open burning laws must be followed (see below). Permits may be revoked if it becomes unsafe to burn due to wind, or if we receive complaints about nuisance smoke from neighbors.


To obtain a burn permit free of charge, please click the red "Online Burn Permits" link above.


Frequently Asked Questions


Q. How do I get a free online burn permit?


A. Click the red "Online Burn Permits" link above and complete the form.


Q. How long is a burn permit valid?


A. Permits are valid only for the date they're issued and expire at midnight. You may apply for a new permit after 9:00am on the following day. We no longer issue multi-day permits.

Q. Why do I have to wait until 9:00am to get a burn permit?


A. Each day the Maine Forest Service publishes a Wildfire Danger Report (https://mainefireweather.org/) at 9:00am. Hampden is located in Zone 7. The online system will automatically issue permits when the fire danger is low or moderate within our zone. We do not issue permits on days that have high, very high, or extreme fire danger.


Q. We're planning to toast marshmallows in our backyard fire ring. Do we need a burn permit?


A. No, so long as it doesn't create a nuisance. Residential use of outdoor grills and fireplaces for recreational purposes such as preparing food does not require a permit (with the exception of a "red flag warning" or governor's order banning all open burning during times of extreme fire danger).


Q. I'm having trouble with the online burn permit system. What should I do?


A. If you're unable to use the online system, please call us at (207) 862-4000 and choose option 3. An on-duty firefighter will be able to assist you.


Q. Why did you change from Warden's Report to this new system?


A. We implemented Warden's Report, a third-party website, because the State of Maine was charging for burn permits and we wanted to offer them to Hampden residents online at no cost. The state's system is now free and has the added benefit of being fully integrated with the state's computer system allowing forest rangers to view information about all open burning permits.



Maine Open Burning Law


Download Maine Rules for Open Burning (PDF)

Title 12, §9325. Open burning

  1. Permissible open burning with permit. When not prohibited by statute, rule of any state agency or local ordinance, the types of burning described in this subsection are allowed provided that a permit has been obtained from the town forest fire warden or from the forest ranger having jurisdiction over the location where the fire is to be set. The burning must be conducted according to the terms and conditions of the permit and may not create a nuisance. A permit is required for:

    A. Recreational campfires kindled when the ground is not covered by snow; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    B. Fires in conjunction with holiday and festive celebrations; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    C. Burning of solid or liquid fuels and structures for research or bona fide instruction and training of municipal, volunteer and industrial firefighters when conducted under the direct control and supervision of qualified instructors; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    D. Burning for agricultural purposes including, but not limited to, open burning of blueberry fields, potato tops and hayfields and prescribed burning for timberland management; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    E. Out-of-door burning of wood wastes as defined in section 9324, subsection 7-A and painted and unpainted wood from construction and demolition debris in the open or in an incinerator with a primary chamber volume no greater than 133 cubic feet or 1,000 gallons that is not licensed by the Department of Environmental Protection; [PL 2003, c. 245, §1 (AMD).]

    F. Open burning of leaves, brush, deadwood and tree cuttings accrued from normal property maintenance by the individual landowner or lessee of the land unless expressly prohibited by municipal ordinance; [PL 2001, c. 626, §7 (AMD).]

    G. Burning on site for the disposal of wood wastes and painted and unpainted wood from construction and demolition debris generated from the clearing of any land or by the erection, modification, maintenance, demolition or construction of any highway, railroad, power line, communication line, pipeline, building or development; [PL 2001, c. 626, §7 (AMD).]

    H. Burning for hazard reduction purposes such as, but not limited to, the burning of grass fields; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    I. Burning for the containment or control of spills of gasoline, kerosene, heating oil or similar petroleum products; [PL 2001, c. 626, §7 (AMD).]

    J. The burning of wood wastes and painted and unpainted wood from construction and demolition debris at solid waste facilities; and [PL 2001, c. 626, §7 (AMD).]

    K. The burning of empty containers, including fiberboard boxes and paper bags, previously containing explosives and being disposed of in accordance with the provisions of Title 25, section 2472. [PL 2001, c. 626, §8 (NEW).]

    [PL 2003, c. 245, §1 (AMD).]

  2. Permissible open burning without permit. When not prohibited by state rule, local ordinance or water utility regulation, the following types of burning are permissible without a permit if no nuisance is created:

    A. Recreational campfires kindled when the ground is covered by snow or on frozen bodies of water; [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    B. Residential use of outdoor grills and fireplaces for recreational purposes such as preparing food; and [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    C. Use of outdoor grills and fireplaces for recreational purposes such as preparing food at commercial campgrounds in organized towns as long as the commercial campgrounds are licensed by the health engineering division of the Department of Human Services. [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).] [PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW).]

    SECTION HISTORY PL 1991, c. 36, §4 (NEW). PL 1997, c. 512, §6 (AMD). PL 2001, c. 626, §§6-8 (AMD). PL 2003, c. 245, §1 (AMD).