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‘Controlled’ Burn Gets Within 10 Feet of Home, Missoula Rural Fire Dept. Puts it Out Quickly

Photo courtesy of Getty Images/ Justin Sullivan / Staff
Photo courtesy of Getty Images/ Justin Sullivan / Staff

Western Montana has been extremely wet this spring and fire season may seem like it’s a long ways off, but the Missoula Rural Fire Department Captain Michael Bowman says crews had a run in on Wednesday with an out-of-control, controlled burn.

“Missoula Rural Fire and DNRC were dispatched to Forest Hill Lane at about 3:30 in the afternoon for a permitted burn that got out of control from the people that were there,” Bowman said. “By the time we arrived it had gotten to about a half to three-quarters of an acre in size and one structure was threatened initially. We provided a fast-attack on the fire near the structure.”

The structure in this case, is a home, which Bowman says was only about ten feet away from the fire. Thankfully firefighters were able to douse it in a few minutes.

“It is early in the season and the one thing we would like to stress to people is that it may seem like it is pretty early in the season and the ground may seem pretty moist, but for the fuels above ground, it only takes a few warm days like the ones we’ve been having to dry things out.”

The fire in this case was a grass fire that had caught onto some overgrown vegetation, Bowman recommends folks doing controlled burns to be extra careful and to try burning little areas at a time instead of doing large burns.

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