But with fire comes risk and responsibility. In places that are as hot, dry and distant from emergency services as Western Australia's parks all are for at least some part of the year, the risk of fire is often very high. There are strict regulations concerning campfires. It is our responsibility, along with a number of other agencies, to administer and enforce those regulations. It is your responsibility to comply with the regulations.
Heavy penalties apply for non-compliance with fire regulations.
Where and when campfires are permitted
In some campgrounds, fires are not permitted at any time; at others, campfires are permitted with seasonal restrictions and in provided fire pits only.
At some campgrounds there may be additional periods before the start and following the end of the 'no fires at any time' period when campfires are permitted during certain hours only.
There is a period during which campfires are not permitted at any time of day or night. Very generally, this period is from December 1 to March 31 inclusive, but it may vary from place to place and from year to year.
- Never set or light fires outside of provided fire rings.
- Keep a clear space (at least 3m) around the fire.
- Never leave a fire unattended and keep the fire under control at all times. Completely extinguish all fires before leaving an area or going to bed. An ember can start a bushfire.
- Do not use campfires as rubbish incinerators - plastics release toxic gases when burnt.
- Beware of hot barbecue plates, coals and hot water as well as flames.
Campgrounds and parks may have to be closed for visitors' safety. For information on what to do in case of a bushfire go to 'Bushfires and prescribed burns'.
Campfire restrictions can be imposed with immediate effect and without notice at any time or place. We cannot guarantee that you will be able to have a campfire. You must always comply with any instructions at campgrounds and parks.
Collecting firewood, including dead wood and leaves, from parks is not permitted. It provides essential habitat for a host of native flora and fauna.
At most campgrounds you must bring your own firewood, at others you must not due to the risk posed to the local flora by seeds and disease that the firewood may harbour. In a small number of campgrounds a limited amount of firewood may be provided.
Stoves, barbecues and other appliances
Stoves, barbecues and other appliances powered by burning solid fuel are subject to the same restrictions as campfires: they must not be used at any campground, or at any time, when campfires are not permitted.
Stoves, barbecues and other appliances powered by liquid or gas fuel can be used at any time, unless a total fire ban has been declared (go to Emergency WA). They should never be left unattended when in use.