Open Burning Reminders


(Release from the City of Ottumwa) – Ottumwa, Iowa – All residents of Ottumwa are reminded of the community’s zero tolerance policy for anyone caught burning garbage.   If the fire department receives a burning complaint an engine company will respond, if it is determined that the fire is illegal the fire will be extinguished and a citation will be issued.

If the fire is unattended the property owner will be issued a citation.

  • First citation $250.00 + $85.00 court cost= $335.00 total
  • Second citation $500.00 +$85.00 court cost= $585.00 total
  • Third citation $750.00 + $85.00 court cost = $835.00 total

In Ottumwa, it is only legal to burn yard waste such as tree limbs, leaves and grass. Please be courteous to your neighbors when burning.   Only burn small piles and be sure the yard waste you’re burning is dry so it produces less smoke.  If you are burning yard waste and the smoke is determined to be offensive the fire may be extinguished with no citation issued.

As an alternative to burning, yard waste can be disposed of at no charge at the Ottumwa/ Wapello Landfill.    The Recycling Center accepts accepts grass clippings and leaves only.   Weekly curbside yard waste collection will resume in April.

Grills and outdoor fireplaces are acceptable for use, unless they produce excessive smoke.  The total fuel area for bonfires should not exceed 3 feet in diameter and 2 feet in height

If you have any questions or concerns about open burning call the fire department at 641-683-0667.