Montana to deploy more troops to fight fires - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Montana to deploy more troops to fight fires

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Montana to deploy more troops to fight fires Montana to deploy more troops to fight fires
HELENA, Mont. -

 (AP) - The Latest on Montana's wildfires (all times local):

5:30 p.m.

Montana officials say they will nearly triple the number of National Guard troops responding to wildfires in the state by the end of the weekend.

Adjutant Gen. Matthew Quinn said Thursday that the number of troops deployed will rise from 123 to 350. Soldiers will work on line crews, on firefighting aircraft and provide security.

Firefighting personnel and resources across the U.S. are scarce with the National Fire Preparedness Level at its highest point for the first time since 2015.

Director of Natural Resources and Conservation Director John Tubbs says the additional troops could help re-direct hotshot teams now working on larger fires to attack new fires before they spread.

Gov. Steve Bullock says there are now more than 4,000 people assigned to 23 major fires burning in Montana.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

8/31/2017 4:32:23 PM (GMT -7:00)

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