FREDERICTON (GNB) – New Brunswickers are cautioned by the Department of Natural Resources that there should be no burning for either campfires or debris within 60 metres of forest land at all times.

Natural Resources Minister Bruce Northrup is urging people to be careful year-round and to take precautions to ensure fires are not carelessly ignited.

"Forest fires needlessly threaten people, kill wildlife and destroy forests that provide livelihood and recreation for New Brunswickers," he said. "Let's do all we can to ensure a safe season."

Currently all counties are closed for burning. The latest observations on the status of New Brunswick's forest fire season are online.

The 24-hour toll-free Burning Permit Information line is operating throughout the fire season, which began on April 1 and ends on Oct. 31. To find out whether burning is permitted at a particular place and time, residents should call 1-866-458-8080.

This Burning Permit Information line does not apply to areas inside cities and towns. For information about campfires and brushfires within cities and towns, contact your local municipality for any restrictions that may apply.

A written permit from the department is required for any fire larger than a Category 1.

Grass fires are not permitted in Category 1.

For a Category 1 fire, a permit is not required; however, permission is given by county via telephone or website. Contact the nearest local Service New Brunswick office or the district office of the Department of Natural Resources for permission.

For a Category 1 fire involving debris, piles must be smaller than three metres in diameter and no more than two metres high. There should be no more than four piles burning at one time, and multiple piles must be at least 10 metres apart.

For a Category 1 fire involving campfires, permission is also required. Certain material – such as pressure treated wood – must not be burned in campfires.

All fires must be attended at all times, and you must have the landowner's permission before lighting a fire on private land.

For further information, call 1-866-458-8080, go online or visit any Department of Natural Resources regional or district office.