Burn Permits and Fire Safety Guidelines

There are a number of State, County, and Local statutes, codes, and ordinances that govern the use of fire within the City of Whitefish and the Whitefish Rural Fire Service Area. Because of fire hazards to persons and property, the Whitefish Fire Department has created a number of Fire Safety Guidelines to assist the public with the safe use of fire. These guidelines are available here or at the City’s Fire Station located at 275 Flathead Avenue, Whitefish, Montana.

Open Burning in the fall begins October 1 and ends November 30.  Permits are $25 and are required for open burning within City limits. More information about open burning can be found here.    

Check the Air Quality Hotline prior to burning at (406) 751-8144.  Due to the possibility of wind, higher temperatures, and low humidity, no new ignitions will be allowed after 10:00 AM.  All burn piles must be completely extinguished and cold to the touch by 6:00 PM.  

Download your burn permit application

General Guidelines for Fire Permits

Permit TypeRequirements
BonfiresPermit Required
Indoor Fireworks/PyrotechnicsPermit Required
Indoor Open FlameContact the Fire Marshal for requirements: 406-863-2481
Open BurningPermit Required
Outdoor Fireworks/PyrotechnicsPermit Required
Outdoor Open-Flame Cooking DevicesGenerally, no permit required
Recreational FiresGenerally, no permit required

Prohibited Items

As stated in the City Codes 4-2-5 (PDF) it is unlawful to burn:

  • Carbon
  • Organic Debris
  • Paper Goods
  • Papers
  • Rubbish
  • Solid Waste
  • Any other type of combustible matter outdoors within the City

An Open Burning Permit  is required for open burning within City Limits and be applied for at the City Clerk’s Office.

Open Burning Ordinance Conditions

  • A minimum of two acres is required.  
  • A permit may be issued where 20 yards or more of wood fires have accumulated from logging or clearing of insect infected timber.
  • Permits will rarely be issued to anyone wishing to burn trade waste, things other than brush, grass, and small diameter tree clippings. Those wishing to do so must also receive a permit from the Flathead City/County Health Department.