Newbury Safety Ordinances and State Regulations

Newbury Fireworks Regulations & Information

Permits are Required for Fireworks in Newbury

The use of fireworks in the Town of Newbury is regulated by Town Ordinance. Fireworks permits are required and issued by the Newbury Fire Department under the conditions specified in the ordinance. The Newbury Fireworks Ordinance provides for fines of $250 per violation for anyone using fireworks in Newbury without a Fireworks Permit. There is no fee for a fireworks permit.

Because of public input at the Newbury Town Meeting and other public meetings, the Newbury Fire Department is increasing its focus on the enforcement of the Fireworks Ordinance. Individuals who do not obtain the required permit and those who do not follow the requirements of the ordinance, which does not permit fireworks after 10:00 PM will be subject to the fine. In many cases the Newbury Fire Department is not informed of the illegal fireworks activity. To improve communications, we are continuing the policy of posting the address of permitted fireworks on the website. A new reporting form is now available on the website that lets residents report unpermitted fireworks directly to the Newbury Fire Department. All of the reports received will be investigated and a listing will be set up to focus on areas of repeated fireworks ordinance violations. Please use this form to report fireworks displays (not posted as having a permit) in your neighborhood.

A listing of the addresses of the fireworks permits that have been issued will be posted on this website and at the Safety Services Building. Fireworks displays that are not listed have not been permitted and should be reported using the Unpermitted Fireworks Reporting form.

This form is for fire department investigations only, fireworks hazards and emergencies should be reported by calling 911. No fireworks displays are permitted after 10:00 PM, please use this form to inform the fire department of late night displays.

Questions and comments on fireworks and the reporting form may be emailed to the Newbury Fire Department email:

Fireworks Permit Requirements

The state law requires that only the property owners and individuals over 21 years of age with written permission of the property owner may display fireworks on a property. The New Hampshire Department of Safety requires a “Water Events Permit” for any fireworks displays that are displayed from a boat or raft over the water, and therefore a state permit is required for a Newbury Fireworks Permit to be issued for an over the water fireworks display. For a Fireworks permit to be issued the properly must be in compliance with the Newbury Street Numbering ordinance(see below).

The ordinance specifies a safety zone of 100 feet between the fireworks display and any structure or property lot line. Because of this requirement, a fire department inspection of the site where the fireworks are going to be displayed as well as the verification of street address numbering may be required before a permit will be issued.

Permits will not be issued in conditions of high fire danger when outside burn permits would not be issued or when the warden determines that conditions are not appropriate. Fireworks permits are issued for weekend and holiday evenings. Fireworks are not permitted in certain areas of Newbury and a permit cannot be issued for a location in one of these areas. Fireworks Permits will not be issued for fireworks displays after 10:00 PM, as the Newbury Public Conduct (Noise) Ordinance prohibits fireworks after that hour

Permits will be issued 24-48 hours prior to the fireworks display. An inspection of the display location may be required. Please allow sufficient time prior to the event to apply for and receive the fireworks permit.

Permits may be obtained at no charge from the Newbury Forest Fire Warden or Deputy Wardens.

  • Henry E. Thomas Jr., Fire Chief 344-9381 email:
  • Wayne Whitford, Fire Prevention 748-1583 email:

    Applications for fireworks permits may completed on the Newbury Fire Department website using our online Fireworks Permit Application form (You will be contaced by phone to schedule a time for an inspection) Fireworks Permit Applications are also at the Newbury Police Department during business hours 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM Monday through Friday. Applications take 24 hours to process.

    State of New Hampshire Outside Burning Regulations

    Outside Burning

    The Town of Newbury is now part of the New Hampshire Online Fire Permitting System. You can now print your new or renewal fire permit at home. (There is a service fee)

    Request Category I & II Fire Permit

    If you have received a Seasonal Category I or II Permit to Kindle Fire in issued in 2022, you do not need a new permit.

    A Category III Permit is only available from the Forest Fire Warden Dave Smith at 603-938-5925, they are not available on-line

    Fire Permit Contact Information

  • Henry Thomas Fire Chief, Newbury Fire Department 344-9381 e-mail:
  • Dave Smith, Forest Fire Warden 938-5925 e-mail:
  • Wayne Whitford, Issuing Agent, Fire Prevention; 748-1583

  • Outside Burning Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can more than one type of seasonal permit be issued to the same individual and/or location? Yes. If an individual has two fire locations at the same location, then both would need to be checked on the permit. The permittee would need to understand the different kindle times, setbacks etc…for a Category I vs. Category II fire.
  • Are there required setbacks from public roads and utility lines? No, however, the Warden, DW or Issuing agent can deny the permit if the burning in a specific location will create an unusual hazard that will endanger life or property or both (Res 5601.08 (e))
  • What constitutes a structure regarding compliance with setback distances? For the purposes of Res. 5600 and the issuance of Fire Permits, the Division of Forests and Lands has used NFPA 1144 as a guide to define a structure. Structure: “A building usually enclosed by walls and a roof, constructed to provide support or shelter for an intended occupancy of people or animals, including any attached combustible piece of work artificially built up or composed of parts joined together in some definite manner”.
  • What is the definition of combustible? As defined by NFPA 1144, a combustible is any material that, in the form in which it is used and under the conditions anticipated, will ignite and burn or will add appreciable heat to an ambient fire.
  • What constitutes “Unfavorable Weather Conditions”? Unfavorable weather conditions can vary throughout the state on any given day. The Forest Protection Bureau puts out the daily predicted fire danger during the fire season which is based on past, current and predicted weather. The “fire danger” ratings represent near worst-case conditions measured at exposed locations at or near the peak of the normal burning period. Class 1 and 2 Fire Danger days are based on the prediction that unfavorable weather conditions are not likely to occur. Class 3 Fire Danger is when fires may become serious and their control difficult unless they are attacked successfully while small. Normally, the state does not restrict burning on Class 3 days, this is a decision made by the Forest Fire Warden who needs to consider local conditions along with size and location of fire, when issuing fire permits. Contributors to unfavorable weather conditions are high winds, low relative humidity and high temperature, periods with no precipitation.
  • Who has the authority to “Restrict” burning? Per Res 5601.09, only the Director of the Division of Forests & Lands can suspend burning on a statewide level. Without the Governor’s approval, this can only occur when the fire danger reaches a Class 4 or 5; it is rarely done and highly publicized when it occurs. Within a municipality, the Forest Fire Warden is the authorized agent with the ability to restrict burning on a day to day basis, based on the local conditions.
  • What constitutes an “Unusual Hazard”? An unusual hazard is a unique situation as it pertains to public safety and the protection of woodlands and property. Examples are smoke impacting visibility on a public road or a fire constructed under a utility line. Health complaints regarding smoke from a permitted fire, burning permissible material are not under the scope of the Division of Forests and Lands – they are referred to the local health officer (RSA 147:3).
  • For rental properties, can the landowner obtain a seasonal permit that will be valid for those individuals who will be renting the camp or home? No. Renters are required to obtain a permit for rental properties. They are required to have written permission of the landowner in order to obtain the permit.
  • Does the paper permit need to be posted at the burning site? The paper permit needs to be accessible by the permittee and presented upon request of the Director or the Director’s Agent.

  • The main causes of wildfires are illegal or improperly extinguished fires.

    Per RSA 227-L:17, the state of New Hampshire requires anyone who wishes to burn clean, ordinary combustibles such as leaves, brush or untreated lumber, or have a camp or cooking fire to have written permission from the landowner and a written fire permit from the local forest fire warden or local fire department in the town or city where the fire will be kindled.

    What time can a fire be kindled?

    Fires may only be kindled after 5:00 p.m. and must be extinguished before 9:00 a.m.

    There are two exemptions to this:

    1: When the Forest Fire Warden determines that conditions are appropriate Category I (Campfire) permits may allow for a small (under 2 foot diameter) fire to be burned during the day.

    2: When there is continuous rain fall, however, the fire must be extinguished when the rain stops and depending on what town you are burning in, there may be some variances to these times. A Fire Permit is still required when it is raining.

    What can be burned?

  • Clean, untreated wood and brush.
  • Material must be no greater than 5 inches in diameter.

    What cannot be burned?

  • Combustible domestic waste as defined by RSA-125N, including, but not limited to:
  • Household trash
  • Packaging Material
  • Plastic
  • Coated or laminated paper
  • Rubber
  • Painted or treated wood
  • Coated or treated cardboard
  • Oily rags
  • Animal, vegetable and kitchen waste
  • Treated wood or composite materials

    Where are you going to burn? How far from the nearest structure, trees and dead vegetation or overhead phone or power lines? Fires must be no closer than 50 feet from a structure, or 25 feet if in an approved incinerator.

    What do you have for fire protection? A hose, shovel or rake, and a bucket of water should be available at the fire. You are liable for the costs of extinguishing escaped fires.

    How much help will you have during the burn? Your fire must be attended at all times, or completely extinguished.

    Commercial Permits

  • The Forest Ranger for your town/city and local Warden are needed to issue a commercial permit to burn when no other means of disposal of material is available, such as chipping, hauling to a landfill or other methods of legal disposal.
  • The permittee will be required to have suppression equipment on site while the burning is being done and the fires will have to be totally extinguished or be constantly attended.

    Gas Grills or charcoal fires up off the ground on your own property do not require a fire permit. Fire pits, chimineas, outside fireplaces and other wood fires do require a permit from the forest fire warden. Seasonal permits outside fireplaces and fire pits are issued for one year only, please contact the forest fire warden for your 2017 seasonal fire permit now.

    The use of Chimineas or outdoor fire places on decks and or within 25 feet of a structure is not permited (Category I fire) or within 50 feet (Category II fire).

    Fire Permits are broken down into four Categories

    Category I Fire

  • A small controlled fire, such as a cooking fire.
  • Must be contained within a ring of fire resistive material or in a portable fire place and cannot be greater than 2 feet in diameter.
  • Must be 25 feet from a structure

    With approval from the Forest Fire Warden ONLY, a Category I Fire may be kindled at any time of the day weather raining or not.

    Category I permits may be issued as a seasonal permit, but may be suspended if the Forest Fire Warden or Deputy Forest Fire Warden determines fire conditions to be too dangerous.

    In Merrimack Category I Fire Permits are reserved for summer camps and camp grounds

    Specifications for camp or cooking fires Category I

    Category II Fire

    A controlled fire, such as a camp or cooking fire.

  • Must be contained within a ring of fire resistive material or in a protable fire place.
  • Cannot be greater than 4 feet in diameter.
  • Must be at least 50 feet from a structure.
  • A Category II Fire may only be kindled between the hours of 5:00 pm and 9:00 am.

    Category II permits may be issued as a seasonal permit, but may be suspended if the Forest Fire Warden or Deputy Forest Fire Warden determines fire conditions to be too dangerous.

    Specifications for camp or cooking fires Category II

    Category III Permits

  • A controlled fire greater than 4 feet in diameter or
  • A controlled fire not contained within a ring of fire resistive material.
  • Must be 50 feet from a structure
  • A Category III Fire may only be kindled between the hours of 5:00 pm and 9:00 am.
  • Category III permits can be issued formore than one day, but are not typically issued for more than 7 days depending on weather conditions. In Merrimack Category III fire permits may be issued for more than 7 days by the Forest Fire Warden of Deputy Forest Fire Warden ONLY.

    Category IV Fire

  • A controlled fire larger that a Category III Fire
  • May be kindled during the day between the hours of 9:00 am and 5:00 pm even if it is not raining.
  • The permittee must comply with additional special provisions to qualify for a Category IV Permit.

    A Category IV Permit is issued jointly between the State of New Hampshire Forest Ranger and the local Forest Fire Warden.

    Information on the permit requirements and the permits may be obtained at no charge from the Newbury Department or Newbury Forest Fire Warden or Deputy Wardens.

  • Henry Thomas Fire Chief, Newbury Fire Department 344-9381 e-mail:
  • Dave Smith, Forest Fire Warden 938-5925
  • Wayne Whitford, Fire prevention; 748-1583

    If you had a Seasonal Category 1 Permit in the past year, you may request a renewal seasonal permit using the on-line Application form.

    Open the Category I & II State Permit Application

    For complete information on the State of New Hampshire outside burning requirements, click here for the Department of Forest and Lands website

    Download the NH Forests & Lands Outside Burning Brochure

    Download the Specifications for Camp or Cooking Fire

    Download the Commercial Burning Brochure

    Download the Outdoor Seasonal Permit Information Sheet

    Download the Quick Guide to Open Burning

    Download the Landowner Permission Form

    Download the Putting out a Campfire

    Newbury Fire Alarm Ordinance

    Town of Newbury Alarm Ordinance Summary

    All alarms installed in the town pursuant to this chapter shall conform to the standards set forth in state law, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 72 National Fire Alarm Code, the National Electrical Code and the codes published by the International Building Code (IBC). Permitted central stations shall comply with NFPA 71.

    Alarm Permit Required

    • The Newbury Police and Fire Chiefs are authorized to issue a permit to any owner of property located within the town or the lessee thereof to maintain, install and modify a fire, burglary, holdup or intrusion alarm system upon application.
    • Applicants for alarm permits shall have and agree to maintain street addrss signs on the property that are visiable from the street as required by town ordinance.
    • Dialer-type alarms that are operated by a prerecorded message machine are not authorized to be used at the police and fire departments. Alarms which monitor temperature, humidity and any other condition not directly related to the detection or notification of emergency personnel are specifically excluded from this chapter.
    • Applications for Security and Fire Alarm Permits and Central Station Company permits shall be submitted to the Newbury Police Department, 952 Route 103, Newbury, NH 03255. Application forms are available at the Police Department, Town Office and may be downloaded from the Town of Newbury Website
    • There shall be no fee for the alarm system installation permit issued by the police and fire departments.
    • Any owner or lessee of property having an alarm system on the premises and any user of alarm services or equipment designed and installed with the intent of eliciting an emergency response shall pay to the town a service charge as set scheduled below.
    • Any central station, answering service or proprietary system that in any manner notifies the police or fire departments of an alarm signal from an alarm system of an alarm user who does not possess an alarm user's permit or whose permit has been suspended, revoked or denied shall be charged a penalty as listed below. Penalties, for each notification made to the town.


    Penalties for violations of the Fire Alarm Ordinance shall be as follows:

    (1) Operating an alarm without a valid permit . . . $100.00

    (2) Operating an alarm when a permit has been suspended or revoked . . . $100.00

    (3) False alarm penalties Fire Alarms

    • Any owner or lessee or person in control of property having an alarm system on the premises and any user of alarm services or equipment designed and installed with the intent of eliciting an emergency response shall pay to the town a service charge of $250.00 for each and every false alarm to which the fire department responds after the initial response within a seven-day period. It shall be the responsibility of the property owner to correct any and all problems resulting in the activation of false alarms
    • Fourth false fire alarm in a year . . . $100.00
    • Fifth false fire alarm in a year. …. . $200.00
    • Sixth and successive false fire alarms in a year . . . $300.00

    (4) Central Station, answering service or proprietary system notification of an alarm not possessing a valid permit . . . $100.00

    Click here for full Town of Newbury Fire Alarm Ordinance

    Street Address Numbering

    Town of Newbury Street Numbering Ordinance

    Street Numbering

    As we think about cleaning up our yards from the severe winter, this is a good time to take a look at the street address sign on our property. Is the address sign still visible from the road? With the harsh winter, trees or branches may now be blocking the address sign, which is a critical element in enabling the first responders to find your home in a fire or medical emergency. Newbury town ordinance specifies that all buildings must have a street address sign that can be seen from the road. This is a good time to take a look and possibly replace an old sign.

    All buildings in the Town of Newbury shall have the street address number of the building posted in a location that is clearly visible from the road during all seasons of the year. For buildings not readily visible from the street the assigned street number(s) shall be conspicuously displayed at the point of entry to the property. Street address numbers posted on mail boxes meet the requirement of this ordinance if the mail box is on the same side of the street as the building and is located in close proximity of the driveway to the building. Numbers placed on mailboxes shall be visible from both directions of travel and in accordance with the U.S. Postal Service requirements.

    These numbers will be at least four inches high and in a contrasting color from the background or shall be reflective so that they can be seen during hours of darkness with the lights on emergency vehicles. Buildings on corner lots shall have an address number visible from the street that the building is addressed on.

    The issuance of approvals and permits by town boards and commissions, Town of Newbury Code Enforcement Officer, Health Officer, Fire Department, Police Department, Highway Department and Town Clerk shall be subject to the property owner’s compliance with the Street Numbering Ordinance.

    All new or substantially renovated commercial, institutional (including educational, nursing, child and elderly care facilities), places of assembly, seasonal residential and multi-family (4+) residential buildings with common secured access doors and buildings with automatic fire sprinkler systems constructed after the effective date of this ordinance shall be equipped with a Knox Box prior to the occupancy permit. Other residential properties are encouraged but not required to have a Knox Box installed.

    Notices of Violation for non-compliance with the Street Numbering Ordinance shall be issued by the Newbury Police Department, Newbury Fire Department, Code Enforcement Officer or Highway Administrator.

    Any person who violates a provision of the Street Numbering Ordinance shall be guilty of a violation for each offense. A notice of violation shall be issued to the issued to the property owner providing 30 days from the date of notice to bring the property into compliance with the Street Numbering Ordinance.

    After 30 days of the violation the property will be re-inspected. A finding of continued non-compliance shall be subject to a fine of Twenty Five Dollars ($25.00) for the violation.

    After 60 days of non-compliance am additional fine of Fifty Dollars ($50.00) will be levied.

    Any property owner who shall affix or display upon a structure any number other than that assigned to or pursuant to this ordinance shall be guilty of a violation penalty of Twenty Five Dollars ($25.00)

    Please send questions on the requirements of the Street Numbering Ordinance to the Newbury Fire department at


    Send Newbury Fire Department Website comments or questions to webmaster,Wayne R. Whitford


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