Update – Mill Creek Fire Almost Contained at 700 Acres [AUDIO]
UPDATE 1:00 p.m. Friday, July 26
The Mill Creek Fire is now at 700 acres in the area around Frenchtown, and fire crews are working to complete containment lines around the fire. Firefighters from local agencies and departments are working the fire today. The strategy is to keep the fire from growing.
DNRC Fire Information Officer Cindy Super said Friday afternoon that evacuees are being allowed to return to their homes,
"We pretty much lifted the evacuations, though that could change in any minute," Super said. "The fire is still active, and the other thing is that we have a lot of traffic in the area with crews coming in and out. We're keeping those roads open to local traffic and local emergency traffic only. People have been very supportive of the firefighters and we really appreciate everyone working with us to keep people safe."
DNRC Fire Information Officer Cindy Super
UPDATE 2:00 a.m. Friday, July 26
The Mill Creek Fire has consumed between 550 and 700 acres of grassland near Frenchtown. The Missoula County Sheriff's Department's Facebook page has an update list of streets and neighborhoods that have received voluntary evacuation notices.. They include: Mill Creek Road, Spur Road, Groom Road, Spring Hill Road, Bunchgrass, Junegrass, Chula Vista, Fred Lane and Porte Lane.
Fire Information officer Cindy Super as of 9:00 p.m. Thursday night..
UPDATE - 4:00 p.m. Thursday, July 25
Department of Natural Resources and Conservation spokesperson Cindy Super said the grass fire near Frenchtown started when a mower struck a rock, sparking the fire that raced up the hill near Mill Creek.
"The fire started around two this afternoon and it went really fast up the hill with all the light slashy fuels in the grass and its about 100 acres by now," Super said.
"We have a single engine air tanker, we have a couple of helicopters and we have crews and fire engines from DNRC, the Forest Service, Frenchtown Fire, Missoula Rural, Missoula City Fire and traffic control by the county sheriff's department and the Montana Highway Patrol. Evacuations are in effect basically between Mill Creek and Fred Lane."
Super said people who do not live in the area should stay away so that emergency vehicles can access the area.
"People can expect a delay if they're trying to get into an evacuated area," Super said. "We're really trying to keep people from clogging the roads, and we would ask if people don't need to be in this area they just need to stay away."
Super said no homes have been lost.
DNRC Spokesperson Cindy Super
Our news partners KECI-TV/NBC Montana are reporting a grass fire in Frenchtown that broke out Thursday afternoon.
Reports are that residents of Savik Lane may be evacuated as the fire raced up a hill in the area. Missoula Rural Fire and DNRC crews are on the scene.