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Sunday
Jul282013

Fight continues this morning on Firestone Flats blaze

KPAX TV photo(ARLEE)- Fire crews are expected to try and take advantage of cooler morning temperatures today as they work to get a handle on the Firestone Flats Fire, which erupted Saturday afternoon northeast of Arlee. 

The fire quickly spread through the foothills, and had consumed nearly 1,500 acres by nightfall. 

KPAX TV reports Lake County authorities had to evacuate more than 20-homes along the upper reaches of the Jocko Lakes Road as the cloud of smoke mushroomed over the valley. Helicopters and SEAT aircraft, or single engine air tankers, were pulled in off others fires burning in the area to get retardant and water on the blaze, while local firefighters and then Lolo Hot Shots from the Forest Service moved in on the ground.

Hot temperatures, very low humidity and gusty winds helped to push the flames rapidly through the timber. Winds are expected to calm today, and that could give firefighters a break. 

Lolo National Forest closed the Jocko Lakes Road at the Seeley Lake end as a safety precaution. This fire is burning west of the major blaze that scorched the Jocko Lakes country in August 2007. 

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