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The primary result of combustion. The juridical meaning does not differ from the vernacular meaning.

It is a crime to burn certain types of property under particular circumstances, both under the Common Law and a number of state statutes. Some of these crimes are regarded as Arson, but ordinarily, arson relates specifically to buildings and their contents.

The act of willfully and maliciously setting fire to property belonging to another person—such as stacks of hay or grain, grasses, fences, or wood—is ordinarily punishable as a misdemeanor. Some jurisdictions grade the offense as a felony.

Statutes relating to fires ordinarily define the acts required for conviction. Under these statutes, willfully is defined as meaning with an evil or malicious intent or malevolent motive.

An individual who willfully or negligently sets fire to his or her own woods, prairie land, or other specified areas might be guilty of a misdemeanor. In addition, it is a misdemeanor to burn such areas without first giving proper notice to adjacent landowners or for an individual to allow a fire kindled on his or her wood or prairie to escape and burn adjoining property.

Some statutes relate to burning cultivated ground. Such legislation exists to prevent disastrous fires, and they do not apply to ordinary acts of agriculture that are properly conducted, such as the setting of fire to an area of land to prepare for planting.

Under some statutes that prohibit or regulate the setting of fires, a monetary penalty is imposed on people who violate their provisions. Frequently an agency—such as a state board of forest park preservation commissioners—is named specifically in the statute to bring an action to collect the penalty. Some statutes impose liability on an individual who allows fire to escape from his or her own property even though such escape is not willful, while other statutes provide that a landowner who sets a fire as a result of necessity—such as a back fire used to subdue another fire—will not be held liable. An individual is usually free from liability when he or she is lawfully burning something on his or her own farm and the fire accidentally spreads to an adjacent farm or woods.

There is civil liability for damages at common law imposed upon anyone who willfully and intentionally sets a fire. Some statutes under which criminal liability is imposed for setting certain types of fires also make express provisions that the individual whose property is damaged by the fire may initiate a civil action to recover any loss. Generally, the limit of damages is the loss actually incurred by the fire. Some statutes, however, provide for the recovery of double or treble damages.


(Burn), verb conflagrate, deflagrate, heat, ignite, incandesce, inflame, kindle, light, scorch, singe, warm
Associated concepts: Fire Act, Firefighter's Rule, Fireman's Rule


(Discharge), verb depose, dismiss, expel, lay off, remove, stimulate, terminate, torrefy


(Stimulate), verb animate, arouse, electrify, enliven, excite, foster, goad, incite, inspirit, quicken, rouse, spur, stir
See also: ardor, barrage, burn, conflagration, deflagrate, depose, discharge, dismiss, foment, life, passion, provoke, remove, spirit, stimulate, supplant
References in periodicals archive ?
If a child is over 6 months of age and "the parent wants it, fire away," he commented.
If the pin that corresponds with that distance is clear of the obstacle, fire away.
According to the complaint, the Tailwind operation was to disrupt Vietcong supply routes on the Ho Chi Minh Trail and draw enemy fire away from a larger military strike in the same region.
For me, it seemed to take the fire away from a tradition of music that has so much power and raw energy.
The fire service is advising people who hold bonfires at home to keep the fire away from houses, garages, sheds, fences, overhead cables, trees and shrubs, make sure children and pets are out of the way and keep buckets of water nearby.
Crews are working to keep the fire away from the Anderson Creek drainage, active timber sales on national forest land, spotted owl habitat and developed properties to the south of the Mount Washington Wilderness.
FREE Our fantastic offer includes free entry, up to 10 games, all the equipment you'll need to get started, PLUS 100 paintballs to fire away.
The red grouse is indigenous to Britain, and all across the moors of Yorkshire and Scotland numerous guns will fire away at these game birds as top restaurants will prepare to serve it on their menus.
FILL the two containers of this quirky condiment gun up with the ammo of your choice then fire away at your food while cracking one-liners about being Colonel Mustard.
An EU Commission source explained: "It draws the fire away from those campaigning for a referendum on the new constitutional treaty.