Fire in Theme Camps

The winds can pick up at any time on the Black Rock Desert, and untended or dangerously-constructed fires in theme camps can quickly throw sparks and embers long distances across the playa, and into other flammable structures. It’s imperative that each participant using fire do their part to keep Black Rock City safe.

If you’re planning on having fire in your theme camp, whether it’s an Open Fire or Flame Effects, you must comply with the following rules. These are for your safety, the safety of your campmates, and all of Black Rock City.

Open Fire Within Theme Camps

  • Burning of a large art installation is not allowed in any camping area.
  • No fire barrels or Open Fire shall be left unattended. At least one camp member should be designated fire tender and be within visual distance at all times. If found unattended while lit, open flames or burn barrels may be extinguished and/or confiscated if there is sufficient threat of hazard.
  • If winds pick up, all Open Fire must be put out immediately and burn barrels must be extinguished if they begin to throw sparks.
  • Open Fire greater than 10 feet tall should be secured from the wind and its safety perimeter increased appropriately.
  • Open Fire or burn barrels must be extinguished at the request of any Ranger, FAST, and/or Emergency Services personnel.
  • A 20 foot zone around the fire must be free of any flammable materials such as (but not limited to) cloth, paper, tents, plastic, etc
  • A supply of at least five gallons of water must be kept on hand to extinguish the fire in case of high winds or other hazards. Wind can blow embers and sparks a long distance across the playa!
  • Burn barrels should be secured and constructed in a way that the bottom surface is at least six inches from the playa to prevent baking or scarring of the playa surface.

Flame Effects and Propane Gas Flames Within Theme Camps

A Flame Effect is defined as any device that is automated, switched, pressurized or having any other action other than simply being lit on fire.

  • No large-scale Flame Effects using 40 or more gallons of fuel are allowed in theme camps.
  • No pressurized liquid fuels are to be used within the camping area.
  • Flame Effects should be secured and constructed in a way that the burning surface is at least six inches from the playa to prevent baking or scarring of the playa surface.
  • All fuel lines are to be manufactured and rated for LP gas. Note compressed air hoses are not an acceptable substitute for LP gas line and will not be approved.
  • If winds pick up, all Flame Effects must be put out.
  • Any towers or artwork that incorporates fire should be secured from the wind and encircled with an appropriate safety perimeter.
  • Flame Effects must be extinguished at the request of any Ranger or Emergency Services personnel.
  • No Flame Effect shall be left unattended while lit. At least one camp member will be designated fire effect operator and be within visual distance at all times. If found unattended while lit, Flame Effects may be extinguished and/or confiscated.
  • A 20 foot zone around the Flame Effect must be free of any flammable materials such as, but not limited to, cloth, paper, tents, plastic, etc
  • An appropriate safety perimeter will be maintained at all times to prevent injury to participants.

Fireworks in Theme Camps

We all love a good fireworks show but the use within the camping area is a violation of common sense. Sparks and fire could ignite flammables in the camps, be difficult to fight and dangerous to campers. As part of our event stipulations with the BLM (Bureau of Land Management) the use of ANY pyrotechnics that are not part of a pre-registered and approved art project located on the open playa is forbidden and may result in steep fines and/or arrest by the BLM and/or Pershing County Sheriffs, and possible ejection from the event. Also as the hillsides surrounding Burning Man are in high fire risk status during the time of the event the use of Sky Lanterns is forbidden at any time during the event and may result in fines from the BLM and/or Pershing County Sheriffs

Questions?

Here are email addresses to direct questions concerning:

Art installations in general: installations @burningman.com

Open Fire: fire-art@burningman.com

Flame Effects: flame-effects@burningman.com

Pyrotechnics: pyro@burningman.com

Register Your Project

Visit our Art Installation Questionnaire page to register your project.