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Missoula County fire danger hiked to "extreme" - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Missoula County fire danger hiked to "extreme"

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MISSOULA - The Missoula County Fire Protection Association has announced that the fire danger in Missoula County is being hiked to "extreme."

Jordan Koppen with the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation says our recent hot and dry weather has caused vegetation and grasses to cure. He added that both live and dead vegetation has dried to the point that fires will become very active quickly.  

Fire officials announced on Tuesday that Stage II Fire Restrictions will be going into effect in west-central Montana at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, August 10th. Missoula Mayor John Engen also signed a resolution to institute Stage II Fire Restrictions within city limits.

The Stage II Fire Restrictions will go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Friday, August 10th on City of Missoula open space and conservation lands, including Mount Sentinel, the North Hills, Mount Jumbo and all other City conservation lands.

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The implementation of Stage II Fire Restrictions means no campfires, no use of combustion engines off roads or in the woods between 1 p.m. and 1 a.m. and no smoking will be allowed -- except in designated areas.

Northwest Montana -- including Flathead County -- moved their fire danger to "extreme" on Tuesday.

There were 35 different fire restrictions across the state of Montana as of mid-morning on Wednesday. Stage I Fire Restrictions are in place for Lincoln, Sanders and Glacier counties. 

Click here to view the latest fire restrictions that are in place across Montana.

Missoula County residents who live in woodland areas are urged to sign up for SMART 911 by clicking here. You must register to receive these alerts to receive emergency alerts at via text, email, or a phone call.


Stage II Fire Restrictions prohibit:

  1. Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire.
  2. Smoking, except within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is barren or cleared of all flammable materials.
  3. The following acts are prohibited between 1 p.m. and 1 a.m. and a one-hour foot patrol in the work area is required following the cessation of all activities as identified in below:  
    1. Operating any internal combustible engine. EXCEPTION: Operating generators with an approved spark arresting device within an enclosed vehicle or building or in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three feet of the generator.
    2. Welding, or operating acetylene or other torch with open flame.
    3. Using an explosive. NOTE: A one-hour foot patrol in the work area is required following cessation of all activities as identified in #3 (a-c) above.
    4. Operating motorized vehicles off designated roads and trails. EXCEPTION: Persons using a fire solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off. Such devices can only be used in an area that is barren or cleared of all overhead and surrounding flammable materials within three feet of the device.

List of Agencies and Counties Where Stage II restrictions will be enforced on Friday, August 10:

  • .Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribes
  • Bitterroot National Forest (EXCEPT in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness in Idaho)
  • Lolo National Forest (EXCEPT in the Scapegoat Wilderness)
  • MT DNRC - State and Private classified forest land in Missoula, Ravalli, Mineral and Sanders counties
  • Montana FWP Fishing Access Sites, State Parks, and Wildlife Management Areas in Mineral, Missoula, Ravalli, and Sanders counties
  • Sanders County Private land outside of city limits
  • Missoula County private land outside of city limits (except Missoula)
  • Missoula City open space and conservation land within the city limits 
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