Montana Public Radio

wildfire

Smoke from the Lump Gulch Fire burning south of Helena, MT, June 13, 2020.
Inciweb

Fire officials say they now know how a wildfire started last weekend roughly 13 miles south of Helena.

How To Assess Wildfire Risk At Your Home

Jun 17, 2020

 

Montana is predicted to have an above average wildfire season. And with firefighters potentially facing dual emergencies of wildfire and COVID-19, specialists say that this year, more than any other, residents can play a vital role in keeping firefighters safe by preparing their homes and communities. Morgan Levey takes us on a wildfire assessment of her home.


Wildland fire managers told Governor Steve Bullock June 16 in a 2020 fire season briefing they’re ready for what could become an above average fire year made even more complicated by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Fire hose.
Inciweb

Pre-evacuation notices were lifted Tuesday for about 20 homes threatened by the Lump Gulch Fire burning south of Helena in Jefferson County. Strong winds caused the fire to grow quickly this weekend.

John Tubbs, Director of the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, says he doesn't know how those homes were spared.


A 1,500 acre wildfire south of Helena kicked off Montana’s fire season this past weekend. This year, many of the strategies fire crews use to protect property and resources will look different as fire fighters also try to protect themselves from the COVID-19 illness. Two Type 1 fire incident commanders break down how new COVID-19 protocols will play out in the Northern Rockies.

Smoke from the Lump Gulch Fire burning south of Helena, MT, June 13, 2020.
Inciweb

There was minimal growth Monday on a wildfire burning near Clancy, south of Helena. Strong winds fanned the Lump Gulch fire Saturday afternoon which led to the mandatory evacuation of around 20 homes over the weekend.

Incident spokesman Duane Buchi says fire behavior was very quiet Monday.

Aerial view of the Lump Gulch Fire south of Helena, MT, June 13, 2020.
Inciweb

Updated 3:45 p.m., June 14

The evacuation order for Sheep Mountain residents has been lifted, according to a Facebook post from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff's office says those residents and others in the area of the Lump Gulch Fire in north Jefferson County near Sheep Mountain should remain prepared to evacuate.

BLM firefighters stand near their firetruck as smoke rises up in the background.
BLM (CC-BY-2.0)

Fire potential in Western Montana this summer is predicted to be above normal, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.

“The wild card, of course, is COVID and how we’ll deal with response,” said Bryan Henry, a NIFC meteorologist, in a June 1 podcast.

Map showing the vicinity of the propose Stovepipe Project on the Flathead National Forest.
U.S. Forest Service

The Flathead National Forest is proposing a fuels-reduction project in the northwest area of the Flathead Valley. The project includes commercial logging and road building.


A new report from the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation is tentatively hopeful about Montana’s spring water outlook heading into fire season.

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