The Latest: Montana declares emergency amid wildfires

Published: Jul. 28, 2019 at 6:26 PM CDT
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UPDATE: Montana Gov. Steve Bullock has declared a state of emergency to allow truck drivers to work longer hours to deliver aviation fuel and other supplies to crews battling wildfires.

Bullock issued the declaration Sunday, saying increased demand for fuel and supplies had put a strain on drivers’ hours.

At least three wildfires are burning in western Montana. The North Hills Fire north of Helena has burned about 4 square miles (10.5 square kilometers) and prompted the evacuation of about 100 homes.

The Bannack Fire south of Butte has burned 150 acres (60 hectares), and the Beeskove Fire northeast of Missoula has burned 115 acres (47 hectares).

ORIGINAL STORY: High winds are hampering crews battling a wildfire north of Helena that prompted evacuations of about 100 homes.

Fire managers said Sunday the North Hills fire has burned about 4 square miles (10.5 square kilometers), but no homes have been lost.

The fire is burning about 15 miles (24 kilometers) north of Helena. About 140 firefighters are on the scene.

Strong winds and high temperatures were expected again Sunday.

Firefighters returned to the scene of another blaze in Montana on Saturday, a day after they were pulled off the line because of the discovery of two 1940s artillery shells. Authorities say the shells were used to illuminate battlefields at night.

The Bannack Fire is about 80 miles (130 kilometers) south of Butte. The fire has burned 150 acres (60 hectares).

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