Wildland Fire Suppression
Through the Fire Suppression Program, DNRC directly protects 5,158,942 acres of state, private, and federal lands; assists all 56 cooperating counties with fires exceeding their capabilities on 45,309,480 acres of state and private lands and subcontracts fire protection on 1,744,456 acres of state and private lands to the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Flathead Tribal Agency of The Bureau of Indian Affairs. DNRC also provides support and assistance to federal fire agencies, project fires and other states when appropriate.
We employ safe, aggressive suppression actions to protect lives, property and natural resources. DNRC preparedness strives for and maintains a goal of 95% of all direct protection fires controlled at less than 10 acres. For the past ten years, 96% of DNRC's fires were suppressed at 10 acres or less.
The Fire and Aviation Program staffs 65 engines (and water tenders) and 5 helicopters to provide direct protection of 5.2 million acres. Our DNRC firefighting force has engines and air resources in a state of elevated readiness from June 15 to September 15. They are loacted in the following Land Office areas.
- Central Land Office has suppression units at Helena and Dillon.
- Northwestern Land Office has suppression units at Kalispell, Libby, Plains, Stillwater, Swan, and an initial attack station at Boorman.
- Southwestern Land Office has suppression units at Anaconda, Clearwater, Missoula, Lincoln, and an initial attack station at Garrison.