Fire Department

Questions about fire prevention, enforcement and education.

How do I report a fire, medical or other emergency call?

For emergencies, please call 911.

When is a permit required for open burning?

Based on the International Fire Code adopted by ordinance, a burn permit from the Fire Department is required for silvicultural, range (prairie grass) or wildlife management practices; prevention of control of disease or pests or a bonfire for ceremonial purposes (homecoming, religious, etc.). Open burning permits for silvicultural, range or wildlife management practices normally require an open burning permit from the Illinois EPA prior to MFD issuing a burning permit. Plan on applying for these permits at least several months in advance.

Are smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors really needed?


Illinois State Statute 425 ILCS 60/ and local regulations require smoke detectors be installed in residential occupancies. Based on these rules, there should be a smoke detector on each level of your home, including the basement. Smoke detectors should be located within 15 feet of a sleeping area. Smoke detectors are not required in unfinished, unoccupied attic spaces.

Illinois State Statute 430 ILCS 135/ and local regulations require a carbon monoxide detector within 15 feet of each sleeping area. Combination smoke and carbon monoxide detectors can be utilized to meet the 15 feet of a sleeping area requirement found in both statutes.

Can we schedule a fire engine presentation or station tour?

Absolutely! If you are interested in a public information program or a station tour, please contact the Fire Department at (309) 734-8427 to schedule a day and time.

Does the Fire Department rescue cats in trees?

We do not rescue cats in trees. Please contact Animal Control through the Police Department at (309) 734-8383.

What are the hours for burning items?

Burn hours are Monday through Saturday, from noon until 8 p.m. Burning is not allowed on Sundays.

Burning is permitted 25 feet from a structure. Burning is permitted within 15 feet of a structure if the burning is done in a container. Residents can burn in burning barrels or trash burners without obtaining a permit from the Monmouth Fire Department. Large bonfires require a permit from the Fire Department at (309) 734-8428. There is no cost for the permit. You must follow the guidelines the Fire Department provides for where you can burn. Burning without such a permit is a City Ordinance violation, and you may be ticketed as a result.

The Monmouth Fire Department is located at 601 Industrial Park Road (north station) and 1100 S. Main Street (south station).

Leaves and yard waste may not be burned on City streets, concrete or asphalt. Burning that creates objectionable smoke or odor emission will be extinguished.

What are the rules for outdoor fires?

The City of Monmouth has adopted the International Fire Code. A permit shall be obtained from the fire code official in accordance with Section 105.6 of the IFC prior to kindling a fire for recognized silvicultural or range or wildlife management practices, prevention or control of disease or pests, or a bonfire. Application for such approval shall only be presented by and permits issued to the owner of the land upon which the fire is to be kindled.

Bonfire. A bonfire is generally larger than a recreational fire and is intended for ceremonial purposes (homecoming, religious, etc.). Bonfires can be conducted with a burn permit and prior approval from the fire department.

Open burning (no permit required). The burning of materials wherein products of combustion are emitted directly into the ambient air without passing through a stack or chimney from an enclosed chamber. Open burning does not include road flares, smudgepots and similar devices associated with safety or occupational uses typically considered open flames, recreational fires or use of portable outdoor fireplaces. For the purpose of this definition, a chamber shall be regarded as enclosed when, during the time combustion occurs, only apertures, duets, stacks, flues or chimneys necessary to provide combustion air and permit the escape of exhaust gas are open.

Burning of landscape waste is allowed in the City of Monmouth, Monday through Saturday, from noon until 8 p.m. There is no landscape waste burning allowed on Sunday. Burning is permitted at a minimum of 25 feet from a structure. Burning is permitted at a minimum of 15 feet of a structure if the burning is done in a container. No burning is allowed on a blacktop or oiled street. Burning that creates objectionable smoke or odor emission will be extinguished.

Recreational fires (no permit required):

Portable outdoor fireplace. A portable, outdoor, solid-fuel-burning fireplace that may be constructed of steel, concrete, clay or other noncombustible material. A portable outdoor fireplace may be open in design, or may be equipped with a small hearth opening and a short chimney or chimney opening in the top.

Recreational fire. An outdoor fire burning materials other than rubbish where the fuel being burned is not contained in an incinerator, outdoor fireplace, portable outdoor fireplace, barbeque grill or barbeque pit and has a total area of 3 feet (914 mm) or less in diameter and 2 feet (610mm) or less in height for pleasure, religious, ceremonial, cooking, warmth or similar purposes. Recreational fires and fires contained in a portable outdoor fireplace are (commonly known as wiener roasts or campfires) can be kindled without a permit or day or time restrictions.

General rules: 

  • Open burning, bonfires, recreational fires and the use of outdoor fireplaces shall be attended at all times until the fire is extinguished.
  • A method of extinguishment must be available during the fire, including but not limited to a fire extinguisher with a 4-A rating, dirt, sand, water barrel, garden hose or other water device available for immediate use.
  • No burning is allowed on blacktop or oiled streets.
  • Portable outdoor fireplaces shall be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and shall not be operated within 15 feet of a structure or combustible material. Exception: Portable outdoor fireplaces may be used within 15 feet of a structure or combustible material at one- and two-family dwellings.
  • Open burning of landscape waste is limited to leaves, grass clippings, brush, tree trimmings, or other naturally occurring combustible matter. Recreational fires and bonfires are limited to dry seasoned wood. Burning any other materials such as plastics, garbage, or liquid accelerants could result in an administrative ticket being issued.

What Fire Codes has the City of Monmouth adopted?

The Monmouth City Council has adopted the International Fire Code and all subsequent editions of this document. The code is updated every three years. This code applies to most occupancies in the City, with the exception of one- and two-family dwellings.

What is the best kind of extinguisher for my house?

A multipurpose fire extinguisher is the best for the home. Look for a rating to be at least 2A:10BC on the label. It is often labeled A-B-C on the extinguisher. A is for ordinary combustibles like paper and wood. B is for flammable liquid fires, and C is for electrical fires.

Where is the best place to place a smoke detector?

Smoke detectors are required by law on every level of the home including the basement and within 15 feet of each sleeping area. Finished attics should also have a smoke detector. Smoke alarms can be mounted on ceilings or walls. For a ceiling mount attempt to locate the detector as close to the center of the ceiling as possible. If this is not possible mount the detector at least 4 inches away from any wall or corner. For a wall mount the top of the detector should be placed between 4 inches and 12 inches from the wall/ceiling line, below typical “dead air” spaces.

Why does a fire engine respond when I call for an ambulance?

The medical emergency response on most calls in Monmouth is by an agreement between the Monmouth Fire Department and the Galesburg Hospital’s Ambulance Service. MFD provides basic life support and GHAS provides advanced life support and transport. The two agencies work together as a team to respond quickly and provide pre-hospital intervention to save lives. Many medical emergencies require more than two people for victim assessment, treatment and transport.