HELENA, Mont. — The Latest on Montana’s wildfires (all times local):

5:50 p.m.

Authorities are telling residents in part of western Montana’s Mineral County to leave their homes immediately as a wildfire approaches.

The fire is threatening 60 homes and other structures Wednesday 11 miles southeast of Superior in the Lolo National Forest.

The evacuation order is for residents in the Sunrise Creek and Quartz Flats areas. Residents living near Verde Creek are being warned that they may have to leave, too.

The lightning-caused blaze ignited on July 16 and had grown to more than 4 square miles by Wednesday morning. There are more than 400 people battling the blaze, but it was burning unchecked as of Wednesday morning.

In eastern Montana, fire crews have contained nearly two-thirds of a complex of fires that has burned 421 square miles and destroyed 16 homes.


9 a.m.

Firefighters in eastern Montana are increasing containment of wildfires that have destroyed 16 homes and scorched about 421 square miles (1,090 kilometers) of farmland and public land.

Authorities say they have contained 34 percent of the four fires, which are being treated as one complex. That is up from the 20 percent containment the day before.

Most of the burning is occurring on the interior of the fires.

The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office has lifted an evacuation order for 50 homes.

More than 600 firefighters are battling the fires, which were started July 19 from lightning.

Firefighters are battling other grass and forest fires in Montana, including in Beaverhead, Deer Lodge, Helena and Lewis and Clark national forests.

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