Hill, Liberty, and Phillips Counties Remain in Stage 1 Fire Restrictions

HAVRE, Mont. (NMB) – As the abnormally dry fall continues, counties across the Hi-Line are opting to keep fire restrictions in place.

Hill, Liberty and Phillips Counties have all decided to remain in Stage 1 Fire Restrictions for the time being.

Hill County Disaster and Emergency Services Coordinator Amanda Frickel says that there are additional variables at play when dry weather lingers deep into the fall.

“Now, not only do we have the regular things all year, but now we have foliage falling down. We have leaves, we have extra debris that could potentially fuel a fire at a fast rate, especially with high winds.”

Frickel says these restrictions are likely to remain in place for another few weeks unless the weather pattern changes.

“If we got some amazing amount of moisture, which we are not getting (we could ease restrictions). We are actually getting increased winds and cooler temperatures. But still not enough moisture to bring our soil up to a safe level.”

Blaine County exited Stage 1 last week but a burn ban remains in place, meaning burn permits are not being issued.

Burn bans and Stage 1 restrictions prohibit open burning, while Stage 1 also bans smoking in outdoor areas where there are flammable materials.

Fires are not allowed at any Fishing Access Sites or Wildlife Management Areas in counties with Stage 1 restrictions.

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