Burn Barrels, Burn Gardens and Fires

It should go without saying, but we’re saying it anyway — Don’t burn anything that isn’t yours to burn. If you do have something you want to burn, the first rule is, “Don’t burn anything on the unprotected playa.” The playa surface is vulnerable to scarring. Burning directly on the playa bakes the surface into a dark, brick-like material. Burn scars can last for years, and over time they form bumps, which are hazardous to vehicles. Volunteers have spent thousands of hours cleaning up burn scars in the past. It’s your responsibility to prevent them.

A fireplace, burn barrel, or BBQ (in permitted areas only) may be used for small fires. If you have a burn barrel, elevate it six inches off the playa. You are responsible for disposing of ash from anything you burn.

Burn Gardens and Wood Donation Stations will be along the Esplanade at 3, 6 and 9 o’clock. Trained volunteers will assist you. Staffing begins Sunday at 9 am and continues 24 hours a day through the Tuesday after the Temple burn. Burn only clean (no paint) wood or paper. Carpets, cushioned furniture, PVC and other plastics release dioxins, formaldehyde and other nasty stuff, and are not allowed to be burned. The Community Burn Gardens are low to the ground and produce smoke that is easily inhaled. The low temperature of these fires, combined with incomplete combustion, emits toxic gases and particulates.

Burning Art

We love fire at Burning Man, but we must burn safely. Whether you want to have a burn barrel, plan to burn your artwork, or want to incorporate flame effects in your artwork or Mutant Vehicle, you must follow our Fire Art Safety Guidelines (posted on the Burning Man website). If you intend to burn your art installation, you must register with the Art Department and the Fire Art Safety Team (FAST) prior to arriving at the event.