Wildfire Risk Reduction


Through advanced planning, understanding, and preparation, we can all be partners in the wildfire solution.

Fire is and always has been a natural occurrence in Montana. Historically, our forests and rangelands burned periodically long before we built homes here. Wildfires are fueled by a build-up of dry vegetation and driven by hot dry winds. The Big Sky Fire Department and Montana wildfire management agencies take every precaution to help protect you and your family from wildfire but we cannot do this alone, action by you is needed.


For emerging incidents, current events, and fire restrictions please visit our Facebook page @BigSkyFireDepartment

We Are Here to Help

Besides outstanding fire, medical, and administrative employees at Big Sky Fire we also have exceptional people in our Community Risk Division. Do not hesitate to reach out, 406.995.2110.

Homeowner Site Visit

A site visit provides recommendation on wildfire preparedness actions you can take to reduce your risk, we walk around the outside of your home and look at the vegetation and structure itself. This can be done with you home or away. Approximately 30 minutes. A wildfire risk reduction report is then emailed to you.

Neighborhood / HOA Consult

We can conduct a community assessment, provide recommendations, speak at an upcoming meeting, and assist you with HOA conditions, covenants, and restrictions to reduce your wildfire risk.

Forestry Assistance

Not sure where to start? We can provide initial information to get you started and who to contact for forest health, wildlife improvement, and water quality questions. 

5 e's of community risk reduction


Home survivability is influenced by the construction materials, proximity to others structures, and how these neighboring structures are maintained. Overall layout of the property, including landscape design and if materials are stored within proximity of buildings, also have an impact.


Roofs are a highly vulnerable part of a home during wildfire. Utilize a class-A non-combustible roof. Click here to learn more.


Windblown embers can enter attics and crawl spaces through vents. Install 1/8 inch metal screening to reduce building ignitions during a wildfire. Click here to learn more.

Exterior Walls

Embers accumulate at the base of exterior walls. A vertical non-combustible zone of 6 inches between the ground and the siding is needed. It is also important to use a 1-hour fire resistance rated construction, or heavy timber construction or log, or another type of ignition resistant material.

image of home and key areas identified for building in WUI

Image Credit – Headwaters Economics/Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety


Wildfire preparedness enables you to take personal responsibility for protecting yourself, your family, and your property. By taking some simple steps, you can reduce the threat.

Life Safety

To have situational awareness when a fire starts, and to leave early when a wildfire threatens, even if you have not received a warning is what Ready, Set, Go! is all about. Utilize this guide to create your Wildfire Action Plan.


Numerous studies and real-life incidents have shown that a few key actions on the front end will dramatically increase the chance that your house will survive being exposed to fire.  Once a wildfire starts in your neighborhood it is often too late (not enough time or resources) to perform the simple steps that will help your home from burning. This How to Prepare Your Home For Wildfires will get you started and for more details visit NFPA Firewise USA


Visit Montana State University Extension – Forestry to learn the importance of forest stewardship, the benefits of managing your forest, and how reducing the trees (fuel) can better protect your forest from wildfire.

home ignition zone areas


Having a plan before the wildfire starts will increase the safety of you and your family. Know when you will leave, where you will go, and how to get there.


  1. Register to receive emergency notifications, specific time periods is an option.
  2. Complete your Wildfire Action Guide (page 15) and keep in home for all to see.
  3. Review this evacuation checklist to help leaving during a wildfire easier.
Evacuation Route on Phone


It only takes one spark to start a fire. By preventing the next wildfire we can keep firefighters safe and ready to work on natural caused wildfires. Over 75% of wildfires in Montana are human-caused.


  • Do not park, drive, smoke, or cook in dry grass.
  • Extinguish your firepit completely with lots of water every time.
  • We do not recommend fireworks during the 4th of July and most neighborhoods do not allow fireworks.
drown your campfire to hot to touch too hot to leave


We are in the begining stages of working with community members to for a Fire Adapted Big Sky group. The groups goal is to work together to build community resiliency and make Big Sky more fire adapted.


  1. Act collectively ~ get more done together
  2. Share information ~ learn from each other and be a hub for resources
  3. Create wildfire awareness ~ prepare, plan, prevent
    Everyone Has A Role In Fire Adaptation

    For emerging incidents, current events, and fire restrictions please visit our Facebook page @BigSkyFireDepartment