Stockertown

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CODE | NEW LAWS | LAW INDEX

[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Stockertown 7-7-2008 by Ord. No. 263. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES

Nuisances — See Ch. 147.

Parks and recreation areas — See Ch. 161.

Property maintenance — See Ch. 177.

§ 91-1 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to prevent public and private nuisances caused by outdoor fires deliberately or carelessly set and maintained, to avoid unnecessary fire service calls and false alarms, and intended to promote public health and safety and safeguard the health, safety, and welfare of the citizens of the Borough of Stockertown by regulating air quality and the hazards of outdoor fires and burning.

§ 91-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:

BURN BARREL
A metal drum or barrel, with or without a spark arrestor cover, used for the purpose of burning wood, paper, or refuse.
BOROUGH
The Borough of Stockertown in its entirety.
CAMPFIRE
A small contained outdoor fire intended for recreation or cooking but not including a fire intended for disposal of refuse of any kind.
CLEAN WOOD
Natural dry wood which has not been painted, varnished or coated with a similar material, has not been pressure treated with preservatives, and does not contain resins or glues as in plywood or other composite wood products.
CONSTRUCTION AND DEMOLITION WASTE
Building waste materials, including but not limited to waste shingles, insulation, lumber, treated wood, painted wood, wiring, plastics, packaging, and rubble that results from construction, remodeling, repair or demolition operations on a house, commercial or industrial building, or other structure.
FIRE OFFICIAL
The Fire Chief, Fire Marshall, and/or designated fire officer of the Fire Department providing fire-protection service to the Borough. In the event that none of the primary Fire Officials are available during a specific event, a Stockertown police officer shall temporarily execute the duties of the Fire Official.
FIRE RING
A container of no more than 30 inches across and eight inches in height, constructed of metal, rock or similar noncombustible material, set on hollowed out ground with a depth of at least six inches so as to allow the fire base to be below ground level. All fire rings must have a metal covering device/spark arrestor screen with spaces of not more than 1/2 inch covering the entire surface of the fire ring.
FIREWORKS
Any composition or device producing a visible and/or audible effect for entertainment purposes, combustion, deflagration, or detonation.
HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCES
Any substance, including but not limited to batteries, household chemicals, pesticides, used oil, gasoline, paints, varnishes, and solvents.
OPEN BURNING
Maintaining a fire or burn where the products of combustion are emitted directly into the ambient air without passing through a stack or a chimney, or a metal covering device/spark arrestor. "Open burning" includes burning in a burn barrel.
OUTDOOR WOOD-FIRED BOILER
A wood-fired boiler, stove, or furnace that is not located within a building intended for habitation by humans or domestic animals, and used for the sole purpose of providing heat to a dwelling.
PATIO WOOD-BURNING UNIT
A chiminea, patio warmer, or other portable wood-burning device used for outdoor recreation and/or heating. All patio wood-burning devices must have a metal covering device/spark arrestor with spaces of not more than 1/2 inch covering the chimney or entire top surface of the unit.
RECREATIONAL FIRES AND BURNS
Any deliberately set and maintained fire or burn ignited in the confines of a campfire, fire ring, chiminea, fireplace, or patio wood-burning device, and used for the sole purpose of recreational pleasure. All recreational fires and burns must include a metal covering device/spark arrestor over the entire surface of the containerized fire or burn.
REFUSE
Any rubbish or waste material, including but not limited to solid waste, industrial waste, household waste, commercial food waste, plastics, treated or painted wood, wood composite material, magazines, corrugated cardboard, container board, vegetation, animal matter, furniture, tires, appliances, trees, brush, stumps, leaves, and grass clippings.

§ 91-3 Applicability; exceptions.

A.

This chapter applies to all outdoor fires and burns within the Borough of Stockertown, with the exception of the following:

(1)

This chapter shall not apply to grilling or cooking food using charcoal, wood, propane, or natural gas in cooking or grilling appliances.

(2)

This chapter shall not apply to burning for the purpose of generating heat in a stove, furnace, fireplace, or other heating device within a building used for human or animal habitation.

(3)

This chapter shall not apply to the use of propane, acetylene, natural gas, or kerosene in a device intended for heating, construction, or maintenance activities.

B.

This chapter shall apply to the use of an outdoor boiler/furnace used for the purpose of generating heat within a building used for human or animal habitation, providing it meets all conditions addressed in § 91-6 of this chapter.

§ 91-4 Prohibiting fires and burns.

All open fires and burns are prohibited within the Borough of Stockertown.

A.

Burning of any refuse is prohibited within the Borough.

B.

Burning of any construction or demolition waste is prohibited within the Borough.

C.

Burning of any hazardous materials is prohibited within the Borough.

D.

Burning of any trees, brush, stumps, leaves, and grass clippings is prohibited within the Borough.

E.

No materials of any kind may be burned upon any public land, street, curb, gutter, or sidewalk or on the ice of a lake, pond, stream or body of water within the Borough.

F.

No fireworks are permitted within the Borough other than those permitted by Pennsylvania law.

§ 91-5 Recreational fires and burns.

Recreational fires and burns are permitted in the Borough of Stockertown only in accordance with all of the following provisions:

A.

Any recreational fire or burn shall not be used to burn refuse.

B.

Only clean, dry wood or paper shall be used in the recreational fire or burn.

C.

The recreational fire or burn shall be located at least 25 feet from the nearest structure which is not on the same property as the recreational fire.

D.

All recreational fires and burns shall be supervised by the owner or occupant of the property or a responsible adult until the fire is extinguished and is cold. The person shall have readily available for use such fire-extinguishing equipment as may be necessary for total control of the fire.

E.

Any person intending to ignite a recreational fire or burn shall first notify the Northampton County Communications Center, using the nonemergency telephone number, of the date, time, and location of intent to ignite the fire.

§ 91-6 Outdoor wood-fired boilers.

An outdoor wood-fired boiler may be installed and used in the Borough in accordance with the following provisions:

A.

The outdoor wood-fired boiler shall be installed and used in an area appropriate to its function and only upon approval from the Fire Official.

B.

The outdoor wood-fired boiler shall not be used to burn refuse.

C.

The outdoor wood-fired boiler shall be located at least 500 feet from the nearest building which is not on the same property as the outdoor wood-fired boiler.

D.

The outdoor wood-fired boiler shall have a chimney that extends at least 15 feet above the ground surface. If there are any residences within 500 feet of the boiler, the chimney shall be made to extend at least as high above the ground surface as the highest height of the roofs of such residences.

§ 91-7 Fire suppression training.

Notwithstanding the provisions of § 91-4 of this chapter, structures and other materials may be burned for fire prevention training only in accordance with all of the following provisions:

A.

The fire or burn must be exclusively for fire prevention training. The fire or burn shall not be used as a means to dispose of waste material, including tires and other hazardous materials.

B.

Any standing structure that will be used in fire suppression training must be inspected by a licensed asbestos inspector.

C.

All asbestos must be removed prior to conducting the fire suppression training. If the structure is a residential dwelling, the owner may remove the asbestos or have it removed by a licensed abatement contractor. If the structure is a commercial building, all asbestos must be removed by a licensed abatement contractor.

D.

All ash shall be disposed of in an approved landfill.

E.

Asphalt shingles and asphalt or plastic siding shall be removed prior to the practice fire or burn unless the Fire Official determines that they are necessary for the fire practice.

F.

At least 10 days prior to the planned suppression training, residents within 1/2 mile of the proposed training site shall be notified by the Fire Official of the proposed training exercise. The Fire Official shall use the United States Postal Service with a proof of service.

§ 91-8 Burning permits.

A.

A recreational fire or burn does not require a permit, provided that the fire complies with all applicable provisions of this chapter.

B.

The owner or occupant of the property shall obtain an annual burning permit for each outdoor wood-fired boiler and comply with all provisions addressed in § 91-6.

C.

There shall be no fees for the issuance of a fire burn permit.

D.

A fire burn permit issued under this section shall require compliance with all applicable provisions of this chapter.

E.

Any violation of the conditions of a fire burn permit or failure to secure permit when required shall be deemed a violation of this chapter.

§ 91-9 Right of entry and inspection.

The Fire Official or any authorized officer or agent of the Fire Official who presents credentials may inspect any property for the purpose of ascertaining compliance with the provisions of this chapter upon probable cause.

§ 91-10 Enforcement; violations and penalties.

A.

The Fire Official and Borough Police Department are authorized to enforce the provisions of this chapter.

B.

Any person, firm or corporation violating the provisions of this chapter, upon conviction before a Magisterial District Judge or Court of Common Pleas of Northampton County, shall be subject to pay a fine of not more than $600 and costs of prosecution and, in default thereof, imprisonment in the Northampton County Prison for a period not to exceed 90 days.

C.

The violator shall pay costs which may include all expenses, direct and indirect, which the Borough has incurred in connection with the enforcement of this chapter. The Borough shall have the right to proceed in any court of competent jurisdiction for the purpose of obtaining an injunction, restraining order, or other appropriate remedy to compel compliance with this chapter.

D.

Each day that a violation exists shall constitute a separate violation of this chapter.

 

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