Fire hazard reduction permits
Permits for vegetation removal to reduce fire hazards around rural residential homes
The 30-foot wide zone that surrounds a structure, often referred to as the defensible space, is often comprised of lawns, landscaping, parking, or other developed areas, so implementing many of the vegetation management activities described in Fire Safety Tips for Rural Homeowners (PDF) can be done without the need to obtain permits from the Department of Permitting and Environmental Review (Permitting). Generally speaking, managing landscaped areas does not require a permit.
However, if you need to alter native vegetation to establish this 30-foot wide defensible zone or to improve horizontal clearance along your driveway, a permit is required from the Permitting Department. The Permitting Department issues these permits free of charge. Please contact us at 206-296-6600, if you have additional questions.
The new permitting process for vegetation management to reduce fire hazards around rural-residential structures simply requires the property owner to describe the proposed project and when the work will be performed. The Permitting Department will issue a permit to the property owner which, along with a list of required best management practices, will be mailed within one business day. The permit is free as long as the work is done according to the permit conditions and best management practices.
To apply for a fire hazard reduction permit:
- Call the Permitting Department at 206-296-6600.
This permit is restricted to the 30-foot zone immediately adjacent to the structure or to the area within five feet of the edge of an existing driveway. To work beyond this zone may require other permits for which permit fees would be charged.
For more information on these permits, call the Permitting Department at 206-296-6600.