NPS Adopts New Beach Fire Regulation for National Seashore Beaches

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Date: May 19, 2008
Contact: Outer Banks Group, (252) 473-2111

Superintendent Mike Murray announced today changes to Cape Hatteras National Seashore’s beach fire regulations. Effective immediately, beach fires are allowed between the hours of 6:00 am and 12: midnight, and prohibited between 12 midnight and 6:00 a.m., year round.

"Beach fires are an appropriate and traditional recreational activity at Cape Hatteras National Seashore," said Superintendent Mike Murray. "I have many fond memories of having beach fires as a child when my family visited the Outer Banks. Unfortunately, in recent years, there has been a pattern of law enforcement problems associated with late night beach fires. The time restriction will allow visitors to continue to enjoy the experience of having a beach fire, while improving the management control of the problems associated with late night fires."

The time restriction, as well as other beach fire requirements, is enforceable under the authority of the Superintendent’s Compendium. Other requirements include:

Beach fires should be no greater than 3 feet in diameter and built with untreated wood with no nails;

Beach fires must be located below the mean high tide line, no less than 100 feet seaward of a vegetated dune;

Reasonable quantities of down and dead wood, including driftwood, may be collected for fuel in beach fires;

Use of water to extinguish the fire is recommended rather than burying the fire with sand. Sand burial insulates the fire and keeps it from cooling.

For further information, contact staff at any of the park visitor centers or call 252-473-2111.


Last updated: April 14, 2015

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Cape Hatteras National Seashore
1401 National Park Drive

Manteo, NC 27954


(252) 473-2111

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