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Mini bonfires in backyards, are they legal?

By Nickhenrys - 14 May 2012 13

Does anyone know if it is legal for people to host mini bonfires in their backyards?

I live in Dunlop (where the houses are so close you can hear your neighbour flush their toilet) and the people behind me are hosting a little gathering with their friends, I can hear everything.

It’s almost 3am and I’d really rather be asleep right now instead of listening to the lyrics of some stupid song and watching the light from their bonfire shine in under my blinds.

What’s Your opinion?


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13 Responses to
Mini bonfires in backyards, are they legal?
Madam Cholet 12:26 pm 15 May 12

It’s not legal as some suggest here unless it is for food. However you would have to consider that something which is causing extreme pollution can still be illegal, i.e. not just a weber cranking up – once a woodfired bbq (or whatever legal material is used), gets going and hot enough it’s not bad like that. We complained about our neighbours burning goodness knows what a few weeks ago for what looked like fun adn a bit of warmth – we couldn’t have the windows open as it was a really choking smell. I think from memory they said they would write them a letter – so definitely didn’t help the smell at the time. It’s so strange the way people think they can burn any items that are lying around.

Zan 10:14 am 15 May 12

That’s great of Rose Cottage – pallets, if they come from overseas are treated with insecticide and pesticides.

chewy14 10:08 am 15 May 12

buzz819 said :

I think Rose Cottage is on to a winner, they have a huge fire in their out door area, where do they get their wood? Treated pine transport pallets….

mmmm, can just smell that arsenic flavour.

buzz819 7:28 am 15 May 12

I think Rose Cottage is on to a winner, they have a huge fire in their out door area, where do they get their wood? Treated pine transport pallets….

geetee 3:49 am 15 May 12

grunge_hippy said :

Our back neighbours were pulling down fence pailings and burning them,

The laws might be a bit different in Queanbeyan..

grunge_hippy 10:26 pm 14 May 12

p1 said :

Unless the rules have changed, it is the purpose of the fire which defines its legality. Burning off waste (even garden waste) to dispose of it is illegal. An outdoor heating or cooking fire is legal. So toss some spuds in, or stand nearby and your fine.

The noise laws, are of course, an entirely different issue.

Our back neighbours were pulling down fence pailings and burning them, with the resulting thick acrid smoke pouring into our yard and actually making our own smoke alarms go off (doors were shut). Called Canberra Connect, who dispatched a man very quickly to investigate. Turns out they had a pig on the spit as well so it was all legit.

I can think of better flavours to smoke my pig with though…..

bigfeet 9:28 pm 14 May 12

Is your issue with the fire, or the noise or both?

If this is just a one off, say a 21st birthday or something, I would say suck it up. Whilst its polite to let your neighbours know if you are having a special occasion shin-dig its not compulsory.

If it is a regular occurrence I think the first thing you should do is go talk to them (during daylight) and see what they say.

Maybe they don’t realize how well the noise travels.

GardeningGirl 2:10 pm 14 May 12

3am? You’d hope people would have some common sense and consideration for others, things that should be increasing as block sizes are decreasing. 🙁

Ex Warrior 1:13 pm 14 May 12

Yes the pros and cons of living in the more recently established suburbs. Never could I imagine living in such limited space. After looking at open homes in Dunlop and yesterday in Springbank rise where are the kids meant to play? Where do you wash the car? Where do you park the trailer/boat? Where is the privacy?

Anyway rant over looks like you may have a point with the noise but yep little bonnies ok and great to have a sesh around.

p1 12:35 pm 14 May 12

*you’re*

p1 11:32 am 14 May 12

Unless the rules have changed, it is the purpose of the fire which defines its legality. Burning off waste (even garden waste) to dispose of it is illegal. An outdoor heating or cooking fire is legal. So toss some spuds in, or stand nearby and your fine.

The noise laws, are of course, an entirely different issue.

ma7trlb 11:03 am 14 May 12
Mysteryman 10:36 am 14 May 12

I don’t know for certain, but I would assume that regardless of the little bonfire, the usual noise rules would apply.

I have a horrible feeling that I know the nieghbours in question….

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