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City of Lincoln
Fire & Rescue Department

Frequently Asked Questions


Am I Allowed to Barbecue On My Apartment Balcony?
No. The City of LIncoln has a fire code, International Fire Code 2012, in which the burning of charcoal or propane grills within ten feet of combustible construction, in apartments or multifamily dwellings of more than two units, is not allowed.

May I store, not operate, my grill within 10 feet of combustible construction?
Yes, the code allows grills to be located within 10 feet of combustible construction. However, property owners may be more restrictive and not allow storage of grills.

Are electric grills compliant with the fire code?

Are Hibachi, wood smokers, charcoal or gas grills allowed to be operated within 10 feet of combustible construction in multi-family dwellings?

May I store my 20lb. LPG cylinder within 10 feet of cumbustible construction in multi-family dwellings?
No. LP-gass containers with a water capacity greater than 2.5 pounds (1 pound LP-gas capacity) shall not be located on combustible balconies or within 10 feet of combustible construction.

Where may I store my 20lb. LPG cylinder?
In a non-combustible, ventilated, locked storage cabinet with no smoking signs and NFPA 704 symbol displayed. Protection agaist vehicle impact shall be provided if vehicle traffic expected at the location.

My 20lb. LPG cylinder is empty. Do I still need to move it 10 feet away from combustible construction in multi-family dwellings?
Yes. If they have been in LP-Gas service, they shall be considered full for determining maximum quantities of LP-Gas permitted.

Safety Guidelines for Fire Pits
Fuel size is 3" in diameter and 2' high. Only firewood can be burned. No paper or other waste products. The fire pit must be 25 feet away from combustible materials such as a house, deck or neighbor's house. The fire must be attended while burning. A fire extinguisher, garden hose or large bucket of sand must be nearby to put out the fire. A spark screen, while not required, is recommended. The screen prevents burning embers from escaping.

Are Fireworks Permitted in the City of Lincoln?
Yes, only on July 3rd and 4th, unless under a commercial permit.

Explosive Permits
Explosive permits for use and storage are available from the Bureau of Fire Prevention (402-441-7791). Please allow one week for the permit to be issued.

Does the City Allow the Open Burning (Without a Permit) or Yard Waste/Debris?
An open burning permit can be obtained through the Lincoln/Lancaster County Health Department (LLCH) (402-441-8000). These permits are approved by the LLCHD and the fire chief. Please allow one week for the permit to be issued.

Letter regarding open fires & rec fires from Chief Fire Inspector William Moody, 2017 PDF

Fire & Rescue Department