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(A) No person or business shall kindle or maintain any open burning consisting of a trash fire, leaf fire, bonfire, refuse fire, or other open burning.
(1) Exemptions. The following types of fire may be allowed:
(a) Bonfires celebrating school pep rallies;
(b) Recreational camp fires for scouting or family cookout activities;
(c) The Chief of the Fire Department may issue written permits for bonfires at his discretion.
(2) All exemptions shall be subject to the following:
(a) A garden hose connected to a water supply, buckets, shovel, fire extinguisher or other approved fire-extinguishing equipment shall be readily available at the burn site.
(b) Permission to allow burning shall be obtained from the Fire Department at least 24 hours in advance of the permitted open burning. The permission shall be in writing and signed by the Fire Chief or his designee. A designee of the Fire Chief shall be on site at the time of the permitted fire. Notwithstanding the foregoing, persons planning on or desiring to undertake recreational campfires for scouting or family cookout activities as set forth in division (A)(1)(b) above shall not be required to obtain a burn permit for such activities.
(c) Only wood products shall be burned—no leaves, paper or trash.
(d) A fire shall be attended by a responsible party listed on the burn permit at all times until completely extinguished.
(e) If open burning creates a smoke nuisance, or a hazardous condition exists, the open burning shall be immediately extinguished.
(f) A fire shall be located at least 24 feet away from any structure, fence or right of way.
(B) Any person who recklessly, knowingly or intentionally kindles, or maintains any open burning consisting of a trash free, leaf fire, bonfire, refuse fire, or other open burning that damages property of another person or spreads to property of another person may be liable for criminal mischief.
(C) Burning other than mentioned in this chapter may be permitted provided a variance pursuant to 326 IAC 4-11 has been approved and received from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. Burning must meet the restrictions of the variance. The variance must be registered with the Fire Department and on the burn site for verification.
(D) Penalties for violations of this chapter do not preclude the Department of Environmental Management from seeking legal action for violations of 326 IAC 4-1.
(E) Liability for fire. Any person who allows the accumulation or existence of combustible material which constitutes or contributes to a fire may not refute liability for violation of this chapter on the basis that said fire was set by vandals, accidental or an act of God.