On Friday, February 15th, the Commonwealth's 4:00 p.m. burn law goes into effect. The law remains in effect until Tuesday, April 30th. Approved burning may take place between 4:00 p.m. and 12:00 midnight only. Even approved burning must be constantly attended with a method of extinguishment.
The law prohibits open air burning before the hours of 4:00 p.m. daily if your fire is in or within 300 feet of the woodland, brushland or fields containing dry grass or other flammable materials. During this time, winds can be elevated and the relative humidity is lower; the forest/field floor fuels are extremely dry, having "cured" without tree leaves to shade them. Typically, by 4:00 p.m. the winds are calmer and the relative humidity begins to increase. This ban applies to all open burning, including campfires.
Remember, illegal burning is a violation of Virginia and County Code, and may result in criminal misdemeanor charges with penalties up to one year in jail and a $2,500.00 fine.
For more information on open burning please call the Fire Marshal's Office at (703) 792-6360 or visit us online at http://www.pwcgov.org/government/dept/FR/fmo/Pages/Burning-Regulations.aspx.