Prescribed Fire Law and Legal Definition

Prescribed fire means a planned and intentionally lit fire allowed to burn within the requirements of federal or State laws, regulations, or permits. [36 CFR 261.2]. A prescribed fire is also termed prescribed or controlled burn. Such a fire is under known conditions of fuel, weather, and topography to achieve specific objectives.

The following is an example of a state statute (South Carolina) defining the term:

According to S.C. Code Ann. § 48-34-20, "Prescribed fire" means a controlled fire applied to forest, brush, or grassland vegetative fuels under specified environmental conditions and precautions which cause the fire to be confined to a predetermined area and allow accomplishment of the planned land management objectives. It also is known as "controlled burn".