There is nothing better on a cool autumn night than lighting up the fire pit in the backyard and gathering together friends for a relaxing time of conversation and fun. Or is there? The fact is, in Denver, open fires are illegal and so are fire pits and chimineas. Actually, the use of fire pits has been illegal in Denver for quite some time, but most people don’t know the rules.
The Denver Fire Department responds to many calls about backyard fires and while most of the time the offenders are simply asked to put them out, there are also some pretty hefty fines that can be levied. This can be very confusing to many residents because they see them all the time, but solid fuel fires are not only dangerous but also can cause health problems. The code states that built-in fire pits, portable structures and chimineas are illegal to use.
What’s the Danger?
As fall approaches and we begin to enjoy the cooler and dryer weather it is very tempting to have a small fire pit in the backyard. However, burning embers are the cause of many house fires and have been proven to start larger brush fires. In addition, according to Families for Clean Air, wood smoke is more damaging than secondhand cigarette smoke and can cause problems for people with asthma and result in cancer. Huddling around a backyard fire may seem like the perfect way to spend an evening, but inherently it can also be hurting your children and guests.
But Everyone is Selling Them
What contributes to the confusion is the proliferation of retail stores selling fire pits, chimineas, and do-it-yourself plans. The retailers don’t have to tell you, and in most cases won’t mention that open solid fuel fires in Denver are illegal. It is your responsibility to know the laws for your area. So while you mull over the many options available, and eventually put one in your backyard, a visit from your local fire department can quickly result in money wasted and even a fine.
So What do You Do?
First and foremost before making any purchase check with your local fire department to see what the rules and laws are for your area. It is much better to discover what is allowed before you waste money and time. There may be options for areas that will still allow you to enjoy the time on your backyard patio without causing danger to yourself or others. While it may be tempting to try to get away with it, the consequences can be severe.
Still Really Want a Fire Pit?
If it is your dream to have a house with an inviting backyard that includes a fire pit we urge you to give us a call. Our expert knowledge about Denver neighborhoods can help you target areas where you can find the house of your dreams with the amenities you want.
Call us at 303-991-9878 or click here to arrange an appointment.