Jordan Koppen with the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation will be setting up a reader board just past the Grant Creek Town Pump starting at 2:00 p.m. on Friday to encourage area residents to sign up for home visits to prepare their properties for wildfires.

"We are doing a Home Ignition Zone outreach for the Grant Creek area, or for anyone who lives in the wildland urban interface," Koppen said. "A home ignition zone is any area that stretches out from a structure from 100 to 200 feet in all directions. We're putting up a reader board asking people to visit the Missoula County Fire Protection Agency website and set up a home visit by sending an email to livingwithwildfiremt@gmail.com."

Koppen said the email will be used to contact residents for a home visit by a fire official.

"A fire official will come to your home and evaluate the risk that you have around your home, so when you live in a wildfire prone area, ity's just a matter of time until a wildfire will strike," he said. "We saw that last summer when a wildfire swept through the Grant Creek drainage. We want homeowners to be aware of the risks and do something about it."

Last August, a wildfire forced the evacuation of several homes in the Colorado Gulch area up Grant Creek.

Koppen said once the fire official has evaluated the property and made recommendations, it's up to the homeowner to carry them out.

"It's your responsibility for living in the woods," he said. "Firefighters have few resources at hand, so you have to take the initiative to do this work, and we're just trying to get people to realize that."

Koppen is hoping that residents in the Grant Creek area will contact the website and email for a home visit before yet another wildfire erupts.