Fire Causes Evacuation of Heart Butte on Blackfeet Indian Reservation

Plane attempting to contain fire on Blackfeet Indian Reservation

Plane attempting to contain fire on Blackfeet Indian Reservation

Breaking News

Published August 29, 2015

BLACKFEET INDIAN RESERVATION— A fire, called the Spotted Eagle Fire, has spread several miles to the east and northeast onto the Blackfeet Indian Reservation and toward the town of Heart Butte in Montana.

The fire caused the evacuation of the town of Heart Butte. No injuries have been reported as of Sunday, August 29, 2015.

Map detailing fire conditions as of Saturday, August 28, 2015

Map detailing fire conditions as of Saturday, August 28, 2015

Aircraft are attempting to estimate the size and extent of fire spread. The Mt. Poia and Haywood Creek Fires have effectively been encompassed by the Spotted Eagle. The Spotted Eagle Fire exited the Forest boundary onto the Blackfeet Indian Reservation late on 8/28 near Mitten Lake, west of Heart Butte, and in the Swift Dam area. It is estimated to have spread north into the Badger Creek drainage and west into the South Badger drainage.

Tribal officials on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation have opened a separate facility for tribal elders and for those with special health needs who have been displaced by area wildfires.The facility will be operated by the local Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and by community health workers, and will be supported by the Tribe. The Red Cross will assist with functional access needs.

The address of the facility is as follows:

Boarding School Dormitory
1 Dormitory Road
Browning, Montana 59417

This fire remains widespread in the southern portion of the Badger-Two Medicine area, and is expected to be very active again today. County and tribal officials continue to carry out evacuations and fire management activity on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Four air tankers are dropping retardant in the vicinity of Heart Butte in support of efforts to protect the town and other structures in the area.

Blackfeet fire 15 2Fifty fire engines and ten hotshot crews have been requested, however resources are spread thin due to unprecedented wildfire activity in the northwestern U. S. Fire managers are doing a reconnaissance flight and update on acreage and activity today. An infrared detection flight will occur Sunday evening to better detect areas of heat where the fire is active.

An area closure from roughly Benson Creek, Mount Pablo and Mettler Coulee extending southward to south of the Middle Fork of Birch Creek is expected to be established later today, Sunday, August 29, 2015.

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