Controlled burn gets out of control outside Townsend

A controlled burn got out of control last night, closing a section of Highway 12 and prompting pre-evacuation notices for roughly two dozen homes.

The fire was burning grass and brush alongside the highway about 6 miles east of Townsend, and officials were working to prevent it from jumping across the highway last night. A stretch of the highway was closed shortly before 9:30 p.m. but the Broadwater County Sheriffs Department said that the road opened again shortly before 5 a.m.

Firefighters from multiple departments worked through the night to get the blaze under control and prevent it from spreading any further. An estimated 250 to 450 acres were burned outside the controlled burn area, but no structures were burned and no injuries were reported.

Meanwhile, a¬†fire east of Clarkston, in Gallatin County, started Monday afternoon and burned just over 2 square miles of land. Sheriff’s Capt. Jason Jarrett told the Bozeman Daily Chronicle that some buildings had burned, but he could not say how many.

He says no injuries were reported and the cause of fire is under investigation.