in Hill Co.
Havre Daily News
The Hill County Commission put a burn ban in place today. The ban means no fires at Beaver Creek Park and no controlled burns.
No fires, period, commissioners said.
"We had so much moisture and rain this spring that the grass is phenomenal, but it's drying out," said County Commissioner Mike Anderson, a former Havre firefighter. "It would really go up" in a fire.
Commission chair Kathy Bessette said the winter wheat harvest, which is mostly complete, cleared some potential fire fuel, as did haying in Beaver Creek Park, but there's still plenty out there to burn.
"I know, living where I live, it's dry," said Bessette, who farms north of Havre.
Anderson said people should remember to put cigarettes out in an ashtray and not toss them out of car windows while driving.
Also, people should not drive off-road because vehicles can spark a fire, Anderson said. He added that people who are often driving off-road for work, including farmers and oil and gas workers, should remember to have a fire extinguisher with them to keep small sparks from generating big fires.
A fire caused by a running combine burned a two-mile area north of Gildford last week, Bessette said.
The Rocky Boy Fire Department responded to a fire near U.S. Highway 87 on Saturday. The fire started near the turn-off to Rocky Boy Agency, engine foreman Harold Watson said Monday. It burned about a 2-square-mile area.
The Bear Paw Hot Shots, Rocky Boy's 20-person crew, left Thursday to fight a fire in Rocky Point, Idaho, Watson said. Another crew formed Saturday and went to the Missoula area to fight a fire. A 10-person camp crew was sent Sunday to that fire, he said.
Fire restrictions were put into effect Saturday for all private and public land in Blaine, Phillips and Judith Basin counties. Those restrictions are already in place for Fergus and Petroleum counties.
Those areas are all under Stage One restrictions, which means camp fires can be burned in designated areas only, Anderson said.