‘Reports Of Unauthorized Bonfires Taking Place’

July 4, 2016

The Department of Parks said they “would like to advise the public that a permit is required before lighting a bonfire on any of Bermuda’s public beaches” as a “strict beach bonfire policy is observed, and the following beaches “may be subject to further restrictions”: John Smith’s Bay, Elbow Beach, Horseshoe Bay Beach, Whale Bay Beach and Tobacco Bay.

Minister of the Environment Cole Simons said, “There have been reports of unauthorized bonfires taking place. Frequently, dangerous debris is left behind that could hurt other beach goers. Anyone holding a bonfire must apply for a permit from the Department of Parks in advance and agree to the bonfire policy before receiving a permit.”

Permits are available through the Department of Parks at the Botanical Gardens, and must be secured at least five days before the bonfire takes place.

The Department said that the bonfire policy states, in part, that:

  • bonfires must be lit on beaches only;
  • fires must be housed in or on a metal apparatus [e.g. a metal barbeque];
  • burning fully-assembled pallets is strictly prohibited;
  • bonfires must be under the care and direction of a competent adult;
  • and all bonfires must be thoroughly extinguished and properly disposed of by the end of the period granted by the permit.

“The Ministry of the Environment encourages all beach users to ensure that Bermuda’s National Parks remain a place of recreation and enjoyment for everyone. Responsible disposal of any debris from beach bonfires will keep our beaches safe for all,” a spokesperson said.

Bermuda’s beaches fall under the protection of the Bermuda National Parks Act 1986 and The Bermuda National Parks Regulations 1988.

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Category: Accidents and fires, All, News

Comments (41)

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  1. Terry says:

    Long hot summer.
    Take care.

  2. San George says:

    This is what happens when you want to give status to people who are not aware that these are the no fun islands! Y’all can’t just go starting fires; you need permission from the powers that be. Crockwell just got a taste of the power. Still want to use that Pathway?

    • Terry says:

      San George.
      De Dinghy Klub shrew yoo howt.

      Piss off.
      You talk s#!t.

    • Wow says:

      Let me go start a fire on your front porch then since you want a free for all.

      • Say Whaat? says:

        A beach is not your front porch. You are over reaching!

        • Come Correct says:

          No a beach is a place where hundreds, even thousands of people go. Can you imagine taking a nail or six in the foot because someone decided to burn pallets and then just Bury it after? Get it now? I haven’t even started on the people who think it’s a great idea to throw beer bottles into a fire and just leave it, as I’ve recently seen.

    • Zevon says:

      Some people want to protect the environment, some don’t care about it.
      You’d think Bermudians would take some pride in the place.

      • reddamtibi says:

        Zevon – I’m quoting you here…”You’d think Bermudians would take some pride in the place.”

        Are you positing that Bermudians are starting these fires or replying to San George.

        In any event these fires are being set by the same people that have been setting them for years – young kids on summer vacation having some fun.

        And to be clear “filobedo21″ there is a mix of Bermudian and non Bermudians involved okay – so please do not play the “where your ancestors came from card”

      • Say Whaat? says:

        Enjoying a bonfire is the equivalent of not taking pride in our country? Have several seats!

      • Eliza says:

        It is not Bermudians who are making bonfires it is the foreign workers who are not aware of out Parks rules. indeed they may not even know that the public beaches are considered parks and are governed by park rules. But I must say that I never see parks rangers around beaches, especially evenings when bonfires are alive. Add Warwick Long Bay to the list of places where people think they have the right to light bonfires. These are not Canadian beaches where you can do this sort of thing. Not that I am targeting Canadians per se. Be respectful of the Park rules in this small island and Parks Dept. can you please be present to advise and enforce the rules. Thanks.

    • filobedo21 says:

      You just have to comment on everything. Even if the comment is dumb. Your ancestors came from some where else too. And so did mine.

      • SpitBouy says:

        @ filodedo21,

        Yup spot on. Never see a sensible comment from San George, probably thinks they found his ancestors here when they got ship wrecked, loser for sure. LMAO

        • bermyguy says:

          i dont understand why people always need to bring up when my “born” bermudians ancestors came here. yes we know they came here but decades or centuries ago doesnt compare to the foreign we have here coming today or the past 20 or so years. when our ancestors came here decades ago either as slaves, indentured servants, or on their own there was more land and different times in bermuda. they werent coming and taking jobs that born bermudians can and want to do. they werent coming and taking jobs that bermudians go away to school get degrees and come back only to be told they can’t get a job, only to see more and more foreigners getting jobs. so yes all bermudians came from somewhere but comparing today’s influx of foreigners to times past is a bad excuse.

          thats the same as saying all white people were slave masters and their descendants should be held accountable for slavery.

          times are different, so please stop comparing my ancestors to yours.

          signed a born bred, 3rd generation bermudian.

    • ignorance says:

      All the bonfires I’ve seen are taken place by bermudians. So don’t be so ignorant. You should be ashamed of yourself.

  3. Legalgal says:

    Absolutely necessary as some spoil it for others and need to be held to account. On 2 occasions we have found broken glass bottles and exposed palette nails. Dangerous. They are not saying “no” they are just saying do it properly or we will trace you.

    • M says:

      For the life of me I could never understand the thinking into throwing glass bottles into bonfires.

      • innna says:

        its laziness… there is no thinking involved…. u clearly don’t understand these peoples mindset

        • SpitBouy says:

          @ Inna,

          I agree on the no thinking part.

          However no one understands their mindset, least of all themselves. Just sayin’. ;-)

  4. john says:

    Bermuda u really cant do nothing WOW on the beach all part of a night @ the beach.

    • reddamtibi says:

      John – You simply cannot burn a bonfire and leave nails and glass exposed or even buried (for the most part a shallow burial) there have been numerous cases over the years where people get their foot or leg cut – not all of these cases go reported to the news – therefore the problem is not as small as you may think it to be.

      Your attitude towards this says a lot about you and where your alliances lie.

  5. Triangle Drifter says:

    Having a fire on a beach any larger than what is needed to cook some hot dogs or make some smores is totally unecessary. To grant permits for anything larger is asking for nails, broken glass, beer cans, anything else that the idiots will throw in to see if it will burn.

    Try having a fire in a US state park or national park in anything other than a proper fire ring & see how fast you will get ejected from the park, along with a fine to help you remember to pay attention to rules & common sense.

    • SpitBouy says:

      @ Triangle Drifter,

      You’re so right my friend.

      People like San George think they could just ‘make off’ to those same US parks rangers and they will leave them alone. Yeah right, I’d pay to see the outcome of that! Lol. Sadly though that’s probably the case here, just act tough and ‘make off’ and they’ll probably leave you alone (sighs).

      That’s if you even see a local parks ranger of course. It’s way past time the Govt give them some backing with legislation, pay and the courts so they can deal with this and other things which ruin beach experiences for everyone else like loud music etc..

    • reddamtibi says:

      Exactly – but this is Bermuda – better to ask forgiveness than permission it would seem.

    • Say Whaat? says:

      Says the boring old man. Of course anything larger includes nails, bottles, etc. You can have a seat too!

  6. Department of Parks said they “would like to advise the public that a permit is required before lighting a bonfire on any of Bermuda’s public beaches” as a “strict beach bonfire policy is observed, and the following beaches “may be subject to further restrictions”: John Smith’s Bay, Elbow Beach, Horseshoe Bay Beach, Whale Bay Beach and Tobacco Bay.

    Minister of the Environment Cole Simons said, “There have been reports of unauthorized bonfires taking place. Frequently, dangerous debris is left behind that could hurt other beach goers. Anyone holding a bonfire must apply for a permit from the Department of Parks in advance and agree to the bonfire policy before receiving a permit.”

    Question: A strict policy ENFORCED By WHO Cole Simons? Would that be the Bermuda Police Service? YOU KNOW the same first responders WHO Can’t FIND the GUNS! But they can tell you which GUN was USED for how many Gun Murders? REALLY! Tell you what Keep Watching the Fires BURNING okay! Carry On! Spare Me! Better Yet as an Equestrian TELL ME why I have to walk through Horse Excrement on Bermuda’s Railway Trails! Better YET Catch a REAL CLUE okay! SMH! For REAL & Yes said IT!

  7. Point boy says:


    • Point boy says:

      Sorry I’m in football mode.

      • reddamtibi says:

        Portugal better get in goal scoring mode or those boys from Wales will have the lot of you crying tears into your Sagres’….

  8. Never never says:

    There are also people bring their dogs on the beaches and to restaurants you know their children sheesh funny smh

  9. SpitBouy says:

    The thing is people know there is no enforcement so they won’t be caught, because of that they will continue having these fires pallets, bottles an all.
    The Govt needs how some guts (laughs) and give the park rangers the powers and the budget to be able to deal with this nonsense. Have them patrol the beaches and prosecute anyone they find with illegal fires, even people who have permits but who are burning banned items like pallets and bottles.

    If not just shut the heck up and allow it to continue as these sound bites are not going to change the minds of losers like San George etc.. they don’t care and or are just ignorant.

  10. Drewgle says:

    The main problem is that when people DO send in their application, they get no response from the parks department. It’s happened to me before, so just assumed that since NOBODY responded there was no objection to the application and just went ahead with the bonfire.

    There’s probably some email account somewhere in government with hundreds of beach bonfire applications just sitting in it, waiting to be approved…

  11. Maddog says:

    Not very plesant sitting on our lovely sand with ashes mixed in. Just clean up your crap – whatever you take there, take back with you. I don’t want your trash, your ashes, or your dog poop for that matter. You know who you are – selfish. You take alot of effort to plan your party – make the same effort to clean up after it. How hard is that for you?

  12. Silver bullet says:

    People complain about everything. This Island is too conservative and you wonder why we have low visitor arrivals. No creative imagination needed to figure out why.

    • Come Correct says:

      Did you know there’s a beach in Liberia that everyone sh*ts on? We should stop being so conservative and just go around sh*tting on our beaches. FYI, we have many more tourists than Liberia…can’t imagine why.

    • Varied says:

      Bullet seems like the person who throws bottles and bags out the car window and expects ‘someone else’ to pick it up.

      Hell, we need this island to be *more* conservative, look at the anarchy on our roads.

  13. Maddog says:

    You know why there are rules right – because morons before us abused the privilege – they left all their crap behind and ruined the space for those that come after them. Call it “too conservative” if you like….We only have so much space…before it’s all ruined. Camping is the same thing, enjoy your plot, camp and have fun and CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELVES.

  14. Eliza says:

    IF everyone would simply conduct themselves as responsible human beings park rangers would not have to police us. We know what to do… clean up, so others don’t have to come behind you, don’t make bonfires so the beach is not full of darkened sand and hot black coals, don’t bring your dog to poop in the sand and make others wary, don’t ride horses on the beach during the busy season, pick up debris washed up from the ocean, Don’t play loud music and annoy others who are not in your party, and then park rangers can rest well at night. Please and thank you.

  15. Who jock says:

    Authorised…by an authority…then maybe if you meet “their” criteria…..you will be allowed to do that….hey…you ever hear anyone say your not allowed to do a thing?
    I do know one country that this is a common place statement,this I is due simply to an abundance of restriction .
    Now…I do know why…afterwards the beach should be cleaned by the people who made the mess…failure to do this…will result in a self empowered authority telling you it is not allowed…
    They will no doubt ask you leading question…that you will no doubt answer…lending credence to an accusation…etc etc etc.
    Simply have people to clean up afterwards…have a plan to do so…follow through with it.
    Failure to do this will result in athauritative persons telling you …
    That….”the fact that”….you are not allowed to do that…means….basically see that?…Don’t do that!
    Don’t you just love it when you hear someone lead a stance off with “The fact that…”
    My God….it’s a fact without thought or mitigation….

  16. Who jock says:


  17. Who jock says:

    Reports…who would report a bonfire?
    Which authority?
    The bonfire squad?