July 20, 2021
The most up to date information related to fire response or evacuation notices will be posted on the Lewis & Clark County Sheriff's Office Facebook Page
There are many fires burning across the states of Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and California that are contributing to the smoke and haze visible around the county. Close to home, first responders quickly got fires under control in Grizzly Gulch and up near Park Lake outside of Helena last week and fire continues to burn in the Scapegoat Wilderness. According to today's DEQ Wildfire Smoke Report, the dominant high pressure ridge over the weekend and in to this week is keeping temperatures hot and the smoke is generally sticking around ground level, especially overnight.
The National Weather Service continues to share fire weather concerns with the current forecast. Today's summary says: "Moisture and weak weather disturbances moving around an upper level high pressure ridge centered over the 4-corners region will bring a chance of thunderstorms each day through Thursday. Temperatures will remain much warmer than seasonal averages but afternoon humidity will not be as low through Wednesday. By Thursday, the feed of moisture will shift south and east of the area as the high pressure ridge is flattened some by a weather system moving into western Canada. This will result in a weak frontal system moving east across the area late Thursday with increased winds. Strongest winds with gusts over 30 mph are possible late Thursday along the Rocky Mountain Front and western portions of north-central MT with drier and widespread breezy conditions following on Friday."
We continue to ask all residents and visitors to be fire aware and follow ALL local fire restrictions. As a reminder - the best resources for the latest fire information are listed below in "Related Links" and include helpful maps from the National Wildfire Coordinating Group, DNRC, and DEQ.
July 9, 2021
The Board of County Commissioners approved a resolution today to adopt Stage 1 Fire Restrictions, effective 12:01am Saturday, July 10, 2021 until further notice. Public and private property west of the Continental Divide is exempt.
Text of the Resolution:
RESOLUTION 2021 – 57
A RESOLUTION TO ESTABLISH STAGE ONE FIRE RESTRICTIONS
WHEREAS, this Resolution is issued in compliance with Sections 7-1-101 and 7-33-2205 of the Montana Code Annotated;
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the following acts are prohibited on private and public property east of the Continental Divide until further notice:
- Building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire or campfire unless noted in the exemptions below.
- 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.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the following is a list of exemptions:
- Campfires on private or public property only if they are within an improved fire ring or pit made of solid metal, stone, or cement and no larger than 48 inches across.
- Persons with a written permit that specifically authorizes the otherwise prohibited act.
- Persons using a device solely fueled by liquid petroleum or LPG fuels that can be turned on and off.
- Persons conducting activities in those designated areas where the activity is specifically authorized by written posted notice.
- Any Federal, State or local officer or member of an organized rescue or firefighting force in the performance of an official duty.
- All land within a City boundary is exempted.
- Other exemptions unique to each agency/tribe.
June 23, 2021
Debris burning in the Helena Valley and Wolf Creek zones is closed!
It is hot and dry and up to all of us to prevent unnecessary wildfires.
Please do your part:
Put out your campfires
Make sure your chains aren't dragging
Don't use tools or equipment without spark arresters
Don't drive in dry grass
Don't throw your cigarettes out the window
If fireworks are allowed, light them responsibly
Don't shoot exploding targets in dry areas
Follow all rules put in place, they are there for a reason
We could be in for another long fire season so please be responsible.
- Evacuation Routes and Evacuation Assembly Areas
- InciWeb (National Incident Information System & Interactive Map)
- Lewis and Clark Public Health Air Quality Information
- Today's Air Quality (Statewide)
- Burn Permits
- Disaster & Emergency Services: 406-447-8285
- Environmental Health: 406-447-8351
- Public Health: 406-457-8900
Food Safety, Shelter Inspections, Disease Control
- Public Works: 406-447-8037
Road Repair, Bridge Repair, Culverts
- Sheriff's Office: 406-457-8235 (non-emergencies)
Evacuation, Traffic Control, Road Closures
- Elkhorn Community Organizations Active in Disasters (COAD): 406-442-8244
Cleanup, Donations, Food, Shelter, Animal Care
- Montana 2-1-1: 2-1-1, montana211.org
Mental Health, Food, Legal Services, Disability Services, Senior Services, Shelter, Medical Service
- Lewis and Clark Rural Fire Council