HELENA, Mont. — The Latest on Montana’s wildfires (all times local):
The Missoula County sheriff says a firefighter was killed by a falling tree while responding to a blaze in the Lolo National Forest.
Sheriff T.J. McDermott says the man was killed Wednesday afternoon. The Missoulian reports that his name has not yet been released pending notification of his family.
This is the second time in two weeks that a firefighter has been killed by a falling tree in Montana.
On July 19, 19-year-old Trenton Johnson died while fighting a fire near Seeley Lake.
Authorities ordered the evacuation of about 16 residences north of Lincoln as wind increased fire activity.
The order for the mix of year-round and seasonal residences was issued at about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday because of concern over a spot fire burning between two large lightning-caused fires that have burned a combined 14 square miles (36 square kilometers) in the Lewis and Clark National Forest since they started on Friday night.
Firefighters say fire activity picked up Tuesday afternoon and strong winds were expected.
Park Creek fire information officer Terina Goicoechea says the evacuation order was mostly a safety precaution.
Cooler weather was expected to aid efforts in cooling hot spots. Firefighters planned to use areas burned in previous years to help contain the fires.