[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § I]
This Part shall be known and may be cited as the "Douglass Township, Berks County, Air Pollution Control Ordinance of 1992."
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § II]
Whereas pollution of the air is detrimental to the health, comfort, living conditions, welfare, and safety of the citizens of Douglass Township, Berks County, it is declared to be the policy of the Township to safeguard the citizens from air pollution.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § III]
The following words, terms, and phrases, when used in this Part, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, shall have the meanings set forth below:
- Board of Supervisors of Douglass Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania.
- Any duct, passage, stack, chimney, or conduit permitting air contaminants to be emitted into the open air.
- All putrescible animal and vegetable matter resulting from the handling, preparation, cooking, and consumption of food.
- That property of a substance which affects the sense of smell.
- OPEN BURNING
- Any unclosed fire wherein air contaminants, including smoke and/or odor, are emitted to the open air, and are not directed into the open air through a flue.
- Any individual, partnership, association or syndicate, firm, trust, corporation, or other entity recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties, including any government agency.
- RECREATIONAL FIRES
- Recreational fires are fires using natural, untreated wood and containing a fuel source of no more than eight cubic feet.
- SALVAGE OPERATIONS
- Salvaging or reclaiming of any product or material, including but not limited to, metals, chemicals, shipping containers, or drums.
- Extremely small solid particles produced by incomplete or combustion of organic substances and including, but not limited to, fly ash, cinders, tarry material, unburned gases, soot or carbon, and gaseous combustion products.
- TRADE WASTE
- All solid or liquid material or rubbish resulting from construction, building operations, or the operation of any business, trade, or industry, including, but not limited to, plastic products, cartons, paint, grease, oil and other petroleum products, chemicals, cinders or other forms of solid or liquid waste materials; provided, however that trade waste shall not include any coal refuse associated with the mining or preparation of coal.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § IV]
The Air Pollution Control Officer or Officers shall be the Douglass Township Fire Marshal or Marshals.
Duties. The Air Pollution Control Officer shall have the powers and duties to:
Enforce the provisions of this Part and the rules and regulations contained therein.
Receive and initiate complaints or violations of the regulations of this Part.
Enter and inspect any building, property, premise, or place for the purpose of investigating an actual or suspected source of open burning or for the purpose of ascertaining the compliance or noncompliance with any regulation of this Part.
Have access to and require information pertinent to any matter under investigation.
Send written notice of any violation of this Part to the person responsible for the violation.
Attend meetings of the Board when requested and file a written report of violation of any regulations of this Part.
Institute prosecution for violations of the regulations of this Part.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § V; as amended by Ord. 2009-3, 8/31/2009]
Open burning is prohibited in Douglass Township except as hereinafter provided.
Burning to prevent or abate a fire hazard, when approved by the Air Pollution Control Officer.
Burning for the purpose of instructing personnel and firefighting, when approved by the Air Pollution Control Officer.
Burning for the prevention and control of disease or pests, when approved by the Air Pollution Control Officer.
Burning in conjunction with the production of agricultural commodities in their unmanufactured state on the premises of the farm operation.
Burning of trees, shrubs, and other native vegetation which are cleared from land during or prior to the process of construction when done in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Department of Environmental Protection, including as set forth in 25 Pa. Code § 129.14. The term does not include demolition wastes or dirt laden roots.
Burning for the purpose of destroying domestic refuse, when the fire is on the premises of any structure occupied solely as a dwelling by two families or less, and when such refuse results from the normal occupancy of said structure.
Open burning of dry twigs, dry branches, and other native vegetation, provided, however, open burning of dry twigs and dry branches and native vegetation on piles larger than five feet by five feet by five feet shall be permitted only when approved by the Air Pollution Control Officer.
Open burning for recreational or ceremonial purposes.
Open burning for cooking food.
No person shall cause, suffer, or permit any open burning operation whatsoever if said open burning operation is contrary to the Rules and Regulations of the Department of Environmental Protection, including, but not limited to 25 Pa. Code § 129.14.
No person shall in any manner hinder, delay, obstruct, resist, prevent, or in any way interfere with the Air Pollution Control Officer or his assistants in the performance of their duty under this Part, or refuse such personnel, after proper identification, entrance at reasonable hours to any premises.
No person shall fail, neglect, or refuse to comply with any written abatement notice served on such person, either personally, or by registered or certified mail, issued by the Air Pollution Control Officer of the Township. Such notice shall set forth the violation of this Part and a time within which the violation is to be abated. Any person receiving such abatement notice may obtain an extension of time to comply by making application to, and obtaining the approval of the Board.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § VI]
The following regulations shall apply to burning domestic refuse:
Outdoor burning of domestic refuse shall be in an approved burning barrel or other approved incinerator. An approved burning barrel is a solid, sturdy, steel, cylindrical container with a sealed steel bottom with ventilation holes and an open top, which, during outdoor burning, is covered firmly and completely by a steel, spark-arresting screen. Other approved incinerators are containers approved in writing by the Township Fire Marshall after review and inspection, with a volume no greater than a fifty-five-gallon drum, with containment, ventilation, and spark-arresting features similar to those of an approved burning barrel.
Outdoor burning of domestic waste shall be attended at all times by a competent adult. Outdoor burning of domestic waste shall not be conducted within 25 feet of any building or other structure, or on any road, alley, or public walkway, or in any area specifically disapproved by the Air Pollution Control Officer. Where a property owner is incapable of burning on their own property while not within 25 feet of any building or other structure, they may burn at a distance closer to buildings owned by them, at the minimum distance so as to otherwise comply with this Part.
The area within five feet of any burning barrel or other incinerator shall be completely clear of any combustible materials during outdoor burning.
Fire extinguishing equipment shall be readily available for use during any outdoor burning.
Every outdoor fire shall be started after sunrise and completely extinguished before sunset. No outdoor fire shall be started within an hour of sunset. The Air Pollution Control Officer shall have the right to inspect any outdoor burning. Provided, however, that recreational fires shall be allowed after sunset, so long as they comply with all other provisions of this Part.
No outdoor burning shall be conducted during period of high wind, declared drought, or weather inversion or other situations deemed hazardous by the Air Pollution Control Officer.
All ventilation holes in the burning barrel or other incinerator shall be kept open and free of clogging material. A spark-arresting screen mesh shall be kept in place during outdoor burning.
No burning of plastic, rubber, garbage, or animal waste is permitted.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § VII; as amended by Ord. 2009-3, 8/31/2009]
Prosecution under this Part may be instituted by the Air Pollution Control Officer or any police officer having jurisdiction, and shall be prosecuted in the name of Douglass Township. Any person violating any of the provisions of this Part, upon conviction thereof in an action brought before a magisterial district judge in the manner provided for the enforcement of summary offenses under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, shall be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000 plus costs and, in default of payment of said fine and costs, to a term of imprisonment not to exceed 90 days. Each day that a violation of this Part continues or each section of this Part which shall be found to have been violated shall constitute a separate offense.
The Air Pollution Control Officer or Township Solicitor may institute an action in equity for an injunction to restrain continuous violations of the Part in the event the Air Pollution Control Officer has issued an abatement notice which is being violated and which is not then the subject of judicial review.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § VIII]
The Township of Douglass, Berks County, and its agents, officials, and representatives, shall not, under any circumstances, be liable or responsible for damages caused to any person or property by reason of the provisions of this Part, or by reason of the conduct of any burning activity. The individual person or party responsible for any such burning activity shall bear sole liability for any damages caused as a result of such burning.
[Ord. 1992-4, 10/28/1992, § IX]
It is a violation of this Part for any person to allow any fire to burn under adverse weather conditions, or to allow a fire to burn while unsupervised, or otherwise in an unsafe manner. Any such fire may be extinguished by any official of the Township, their agents, representatives, or designated fire company or extinguished immediately upon the request of any such official.