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Fire and Fuels Management

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Wildland Fire Operations
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Year Round Fire Restrictions
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Montana/Dakotas Branch of Fire and Aviation is responsible for fire management on over 9.9 million acres of public lands across Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota.  Fire management includes wildland fire protection/suppression and fuels management. 

The Branch of Fire and Aviation is also responsible for managing the Montana/Dakotas’ aviation program. The aviation program supports all fixed wing and rotor-wing mission profiles that encompass both wildland fire and fuels management. The program also supports various resource programs including wild horses, range management, recreation, law enforcement, and oil and gas.

In some instances, other agencies provide wildland fire protection on BLM-administered public lands. This is done 
actively burning fire
through cooperative interagency agreements which allow the closest firefighting forces to respond to wildland fires. Cooperators include the US Forest Service, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the State of Montana, the Bureau of Indian Affairs and several tribal governments, as well as several local volunteer fire departments (VFDs).

The BLM’s professional fire management staff not only provides wildland firefighting for resource protection but also consists of an active fuels management and prescribed fire program. These programs use prescribed fire and mechanical methods as a resource management “tool” to protect our natural resources and communities, reduce the negative impacts of unplanned wildland fire, and improve the health of the land. 
fire crew making black line

In addition, the Branch of Fire and Aviation is also very active in providing community assistance and protection services.  The community assistance and protection program focuses on mitigation, prevention, education, and outreach.  The mitigation/prevention experts address reduction of wildland fire threats and losses to communities and natural resources by taking actions before a fire starts.

Whether we are suppressing an unwanted wildland fire, implementing a prescribed fire to benefit the natural resources, conducting a fire training for a local volunteer fire department, or teaching fire safety to a class of first graders, we strive to fulfill our mission on a daily basis.

air tanker
The BLM Montana/Dakotas Branch of Fire and Aviation is divided into four fire management zones. The BLM State Fire and Aviation Management Office and the Southern Montana Fire Zone Office are both located in Billings, Montana. The Western Montana Fire Zone Office is located in Butte, Montana. The Central Montana Fire Zone Office is located in Lewistown, Montana, and the Eastern Montana/Dakotas Fire Zone Office is located in Miles City, Montana. 

Whether you’re looking for a job or just looking for more information, you’ve come to the right place! 

youth learning to use a fire hose
BLM Montana State Office
Billings, Montana
BLM Southern Montana Fire Zone
Billings, Montana
BLM Western Montana Fire Zone
Butte, Montana

BLM Central Montana Fire Zone
Lewistown, Montana

BLM Eastern Montana/Dakotas Fire Zone
Miles City, Montana

 Mission Statement

The Montana / Dakotas BLM Fire Program will promote a highly reliable and safety oriented culture in order to further the agency mission and serve the public interest through the application of sound fire management practices, personal and professional accountability, and mutual support.