A telltale sign that it’s fall in Indiana is the smell of burning leaves.  But, did you know that simply raking leaves into a pile and burning them is against the law? This is an important quality of life issue that impacts public safety and public health.  Below we tackle some common questions resident have about burning in Hendricks County.

Q:  Is it okay to burn leaves or other yard waste?

A:  It depends on where you are burning. If you live within the town limits of any Hendricks County community, you are not allowed to burn leaves or organic matter anywhere, anytime.  If you live in the unincorporated areas of the county (outside town limits), you are allowed to burn leaves, brush and other organic matter (no trash) in containers. You should not use flammables to help ignite those fires and they must be during daylight hours and monitored at all time.

Q:  Can trash be burned?

A:  No!  Regardless of where you live, it is against state law to burn trash.  And no, it doesn’t matter if you have a burn barrel, it’s still not allowed.

Q:  Why is this such an issue?

A:  Fires that get out of control or are left unattended quickly threaten nearby lives and structures.  In addition, burning five pounds of leaves generates one pound of air pollution.  Those nearby with asthma, COPD or other health problems are particularly at risk. 

Q:  Are recreational fires allowed?

A:  Yes!  Recreational fires such as campfires and bonfires are allowed in Hendricks County.  If you live within town limits, contact your town to find out the specific requirements for your town.

Q:  What leaf disposal options are available?

A:  The easiest ways to deal with leaves is to leave them alone.  Run them over with the lawnmower to break them into tiny pieces and let them naturally decompose and fertilize your lawn. 

If you live within the town limits of Brownsburg, Danville or Plainfield, you can take advantage of the free curbside leaf pickup services offered by your town.  

Additionally, the District operates two Yard Waste Recycling Centers (Plainfield and Brownsburg) that will remain open until November 29th to accept yard waste from residents including bagged and loose leaves. Green-Cycle McCarty in Danville also accepts leaves and yard waste for recycling.  Contact them at 745-2000.

Above right is a video that includes information from the Brownsburg Fire Marshal and the Hendricks County Health Department


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