Burn Laws

Black and white photo of firefighters fighting a large brush fire

Gloucester County Ordinance

The purpose of this article is to protect public health, safety, and welfare by regulating open
burning within Gloucester County to provide for the safety of persons and structures in close
proximity to open burning and to achieve and maintain, to the greatest extent practicable, a level of air quality that will provide comfort and convenience while promoting economic and social development. This article is intended to supplement the applicable regulations promulgated by the state Air Pollution Control Board and other applicable regulations and laws.

A portion of the Ordinance reads:

Such burning shall be conducted in small piles. The term “small pile” shall be governed by common sense and shall generally mean the smallest sized pile which reasonably will allow the material to be disposed of effectively. In no event shall any such pile or the total of such piles be greater than 100 square feet in area, nor shall any individual pile be more than ten (10) feet in height.

See the complete
Gloucester County Burn Ordinance

GVFRS does not set or enforce Gloucester County Ordinances.  Enforcement is provided by the Gloucester County Building Inspection office.

Virginia 4pm Burning Law

The state 4pm Burn Law is in effect from February 15 until April 30th of each year.

Burning Law In Brief:

  1. No burning until AFTER 4:00pm if within 300 feet of woodland or grass brushland leading into woodlands.
  2. Fire must attended at all times if within 150 fee of woodland or grass or brushland leading into woodlands.
  3. No fuel may be added or fire rekindles after midnight.
  4. Law applies to camp fires, warming fires, brush piles, household trash, stumps, fields of broomstraw and brush, or anything capable of spreading fire.


Contact the Virginia Department of Forestry for additional information

Read more tips and Burning Laws in Detail at the Virginia Department of Forestry Outdoor Fire Laws.

We ask that if you do decide to burn within the posted burning law that you do so responsibly.
Be mindful of the weather – if it’s windy and dry please consider burning after the wind dies down.

Always have a way to extinguish the fire.
Never leave a fire unattended.