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Liberty Fire

Unit Information

Flathead Agency
Bureau of Indian Affairs
PO Box 40 Pablo Montana 59855
Pablo, MT 59855

BIA Shield

Liberty Fire Fact Sheet Update Saturday August 26, 2017

Liberty Fire Wildfire
News – 8/26/2017

Liberty Fire

Fact Sheet Update

August 26, 2017 – 9:00 a.m.

Inciweb address: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5437/

Start Date: July 15, 2017 Origin Location: 17 miles SE of Arlee, Montana

Cause: Lightning Fuels: Timber, forest litter, grass & shrubs

Acres: 10,101 acres Percent Contained: 14%

Fire Information: (406)272-4354 (8:00 am to 8:00 pm)

Yesterday: On the North side of the fire crews monitored fire spread toward containment features. Heavy equipment operators worked on a 20-foot wide fuel break from a dozer line east of the fire through a regeneration area to a road used as a containment line. Warmer temperatures and lower humidity created favorable conditions for burnout on the East side. A helicopter dispensing plastic spherical devices (small globes which, through a chemical process, ignite when reaching the ground) placed fire where it was needed, making the firing operation along the dozer line a success. Crews on the Southeast side had a more difficult time. The wind pushed against their burnout, making for slow progress and generated excessive smoke. Eventually the crew was successful; however, extremely dense smoke along the fire line on the Southeast side forced a couple of our firefighters to be pulled back off the line because of smoke inhalation. Both firefighters were moved to clearer air and once they felt sufficiently recovered, returned to the line. On the Southside crews installed hose lays, while helicopter bucket drops dampened spot fires. A road grader continued maintenance of the Gold Creek Road toward the fire lines.

Near the Southeast corner about 70 firefighters "spiked out" last night. Meals were brought in for the firefighters yesterday afternoon (MREs). Though it was very cold overnight at altitude, everyone spent the night on the ground in sleeping bags. The crews camped a safe distance from the fire, but kept an eye on it. This also eliminated travel time back and forth between the fire and the Incident Command Post so they could hit the ground rolling this morning.

Today: A repair group with chipper and other heavy equipment will begin restoration work on disturbed areas, including a couple of safety zones on the Northwest corner. On the Northeast corner heavy equipment operators plan to complete the fuel break they started yesterday. Over on the East side the plan is for crews to finish a firing operation along the dozer containment line moving North towards Boles Creek using aerial ignition. Down on the Southeast corner firefighters will search for and extinguish residual burning fuels and prepare to burnout along the new dozer line toward Gold Creek. Crews on the South flank will improve and hold containment line and fire along Gold Creek toward the new dozer containment line.

Resources on the Fire: 3 20-person crews, 11 engines, 4 bulldozers, 10 skidgines, 10 water tenders, Total: 342

Wildfires are a No Drone Zone. If you fly, we can’t. Every time a drone is spotted near the fire all aircraft are grounded until we can be sure the drone is clear of this area. For more information visit Know Before You Fly, https://knowbeforeyoufly.org

For more information on all fires burning on the Lolo National Forest, log in to their Facebook page at:

https://www.facebook.com/lolonationalforest/