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Ask Curbed: My Neighbors Are Smoking Me Out

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A question from a reader who has smoke in his eyes: "We live in a hilly neighborhood and have a newish neighbor who live two houses downslope from us. This neighbor is apparently a pyromaniac because they have fires every single night. At first we thought it was the neighbors directly below us, but after talking to them we all realized the new neighbors had a fire pit in the middle of their yard and were hosting bonfires.

Our initial complaints were met with total indifference. They don't seem to think filling our house with smoke is a big deal. It's not the cedar-scented campfire variety. It's generic Duraflame that smell like chemicals. We can't open the doors or windows (our entire house faces in that direction because of the upslope). We went to dinner one warm night last week leaving the windows open and came back to actual smoke in our house with silt on the windowsills. It's crazy. Can we call the fire department? Is it even illegal to have open fires in one of those pits you can buy at Target? We can't see the actual fire pit, so I dont know if its professionally built. They are renting so my other neighbor called the landlord, who doesn't seem to think its a big deal. With the cooler weather coming, I cant stand the idea of having to have all my windows/doors shut every night."
· Ask Curbed: Ants In My Echo Park Rental [Curbed LA]