MISSOULA, Mont. - Missoula County Fire Protection Agencies (MCFPA) reduced fire danger in the Missoula area to "Low," due to cooler weather and precipitation.
As defined by MCFPA in a release, when fire danger is "Low" fuels do not ignite readily from small embers, but will if a more intense heat source occurs. Fires in open, dry grasslands may burn freely a few hours after rain, but wood fires spread slowly by creeping or smoldering.
Forecasted weather calls for multiple low-pressure systems coming through the area in waves throughout the week, with variable precipitation and winds.
Although fire danger is "Low" MCFPA says there is still a danger of fire. They remind you to always put out campfire and debris burns by drowning, stirring, drowning again and leaving it only when it is cold to the touch.
If you are planning to do some outdoor burning, remember that all outdoor burning requires a Missoula County outdoor burn permit activated for the day you plan to burn. The only material you are allowed to burn is untreated wood and vegetation generated onsite.
Permits cost $7 and can be purchased or renewed online at www.app.oegovmt.com/burnpermit, or in-person at most local fire protection agencies.
Within Missoula city limits, parcels must be at least one acre or more in size to be eligible for an outdoor burn permit and recreational fires are banned year-round.
Additionally, inside the Missoula Air Stagnation Zone (an area that stretches about four miles outside Missoula city limits), it is illegal to burn piles of leaves and grass because these burns are typically very smoky. If you are in the Stagnation Zone, dispose of leaves and grass by composting them or delivering them to a facility such as Garden City Compost.
To learn more about outdoor burning season, permits and safe burning tips, you can visit www.mcfpa.org.