A burn scar is a discoloration of the surface soil due to contact with fire. They 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 from past events. It’s your responsibility to prevent them. Never start a fire directly on the playa surface. It will it create a burn scar and the BLM will issue a citation. A fireplace, burn barrel, or BBQ (in permitted areas only) may be used for small fires. Burn barrels must be elevated 10″ off the playa.
If you plan on burning your art you must register your project with the Art Department and the Fire Art Safety Team (FAST) prior to arriving at the event. You may not burn art directly on the playa. Consider reducing CO2 emissions by not burning your art and instead repurposing it or recycling the materials. Burning public structures such as lampposts or bulletin boards, or other people’s artwork is prohibited. Artists have the sole right to burn their own creation.
Fire Art & Fuel Storage Safety
We love fire at Burning Man, but we must burn safely. Whether you want to have a fire barrel, burn your artwork, or incorporate flame effects in your artwork or Mutant Vehicle, you must follow our Fire Art Safety Guidelines. Participants using combustible fuels in an art installation or storing fuel in camp must comply with best practices for storing and handling these materials. Questions about fuel? Contact fuelsafetyburningmanorg (fuelsafetyburningmanorg) .
Do not excavate holes in the playa larger than six inches in diameter and two feet deep for ANY purpose. Larger holes easily erode within a year’s time, even when carefully backfilled, leaving a visible mark and creating a serious safety hazard to drivers. Use an auger or a posthole digger, NOT a shovel. Bag the dirt you are removing so that it doesn’t blow away in the wind. Refill the hole by carefully tamping the soil back into place (an inverted sledgehammer works well). Repeat this process every few inches while dampening the soil.
The collection, excavation or vandalism of archaeological artifacts is prohibited on public lands. If you find something that appears to be an authentic artifact, contact a Black Rock Ranger. If you are curious about the many Native American and pioneer historical sites in the Black Rock Desert Region, we invite you to contact the Oregon California Trail Association and join an organized exploration.