A week after a massive storm caused significant damage in Cedar Rapids, authorities issued a burn ban across the city due to the widespread rubble from down trees and damaged homes. A recent press release issued by Cedar Rapids Police Department spokesperson Greg Buelow said, "tree debris posed a significant fire risk in our community and many homes had plastic tarps over large sections of the roof as homeowners waited for repairs. The burn ban was in effect because of the concern that a spark from a recreational fire could unnecessarily endanger others"

Just in time for Spring and Summer cookouts and bonfires, the CRPD says that thanks to the work of city crews collecting that rubble almost around the clock since the burn ban went into effect on August 17, 2020, it can be rescinded.

Get our free mobile app

The press release goes on to remind citizens that recreational fires are allowed within city limits but all others require a permit. The following guidelines remain in place for recreational fires:

  • not to be conducted within 25 feet of a structure like a house, garage, or shed or near combustible materials.
  • the distance from a structure can be reduced to a 15 feet minimum if the unit has complete protection with a lid and screen. The total fuel area needs to be 3 feet or less in diameter and 2 feet or less for fuel height.
  • an attendant needs to stay with the fire constantly and continue to supervise until the fire is extinguished.
  • the attendant should have buckets, shovels, garden hoses, or a fire extinguisher readily available for use.

The following items are not allowed to be burned within the city limits: brush piles, contaminated wood, dead animals, garbage, grass, leaves, rubber products, paint, plastic, tar, tires, and used oil. Recreational fires are not safe in wind speeds in excess of 15 mph and yard waste should be disposed of in a "yardy" cart.

PHOTOS: Massive 2020 Storm Causes Widespread Damage in Cedar Rapids