Certified Burner Program

The Washington State Legislature granted DNR the authority to establish a certified burner program in 2018 when it adopted House Bill 2733.
DNR launched the program in the spring of 2022 to help educate professionals and private citizens gain the knowledge and skills needed to successfully implement prescribed fire on their landscapes. Program Manager Kyle Lapham and recent graduate Lucas King recently participated in a webinar about the program.
The multi-day workshops happen 2-3 times each year in different parts of the state. Instruction include both classroom and field work. More information about upcoming workshops can be found in the slider below.

How to Become a Certified Prescribed Burn Manager in Washington State

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources offers three-day, in-person courses several times each year. Coursework includes four hours of prep work before the class, two days of classroom instruction, a site visit, and a final exam. Topics include fire behavior, smoke management, safety, and more. Participants must have experience leading either pile or broadcast burns. Access to property suitable for prescribed fire is required for certification.
The next step after finishing the course and passing the exam is to draft a burn plan.
Burn plans must include:
  • Landowner name and address
  • Description of the burn area
  • Map of the burn area
  • Estimated fuel tonnage per acre
  • Objectives of the proposed burn
  • Acceptable weather parameters
  • Summary of methods to start, control, and extinguish the burn
  • Neighbor notifications
Once a burn plan is completed, a prospective certified burner must obtain all necessary burn permits and authorizations from the Washington State Department of Natural Resources. Make sure to notify nearby residents and emergency response agencies about the upcoming burn. The final step is to successfully lead and implement a prescribed fire under observation by the CPBM program manager.
Burn leaders will be evaluated using this form, as well as on their burn plan and a map of the burn. Courses are held in different locations throughout Washington. Cost to attend is $100 and does not include travel expenses. Interested in applying for an upcoming course? Submit this form to Program Manager Kyle Lapham.
For more information about the Washington DNR Prescribed Fire Program, visit www.dnr.wa.gov/prescribedfire.
Upcoming courses
Spring 2024: April 23-25 at Green River College in Auburn.
Fall 2024: Sept. 17-19 at Columbia Basin College in Pasco.