Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

I called for an ambulance, why did I get a fire truck?

Because we have firefighter/EMTs at every station, when 911 gets a call for a medical emergency they will also dispatch the closest fire station to also respond to help. As we all know, minutes count during a medical response. Because our five fire stations are spread throughout our District, the fire engine is often closer than the ambulance. Our firefighter/EMTs have an excellent working relationship with the ambulance personnel, to ensure that the best possible care is provided on the scene.

My neighbor says you can go to the fire department to get an address sign. Is that true?

For property owners within the Missoula Rural Fire District, it is available to purchase all‐weather reflective address signs and posts at our cost. Currently, the lowest cost of $9.00 is for one single‐sided address number sign without a sign post. The highest cost of $21.00 is for one double‐sided address sign with a sign post included.

Address signs help significantly in emergency situations. In addition to this, delivery drivers, family and friends are better able to find their destination from the road. When seconds count, our reflective address signs work well in day, night, and poor weather to help others find you.

The signs are aluminum with reflective 6‐inch numbers showing your address and can be mounted on a steel post. MRFD firefighters will check each driveway prior to the installation of the sign, to ensure that the sign will be adequate and that the current fire maps show the correct location of your home.

To order address signs and posts, please mail in your payment with the completed MRFD Address Sign Order Form to our Station 1 Headquarters at: 2521 South Ave W; Missoula, MT 59804.

What is a “recreational campfire?”

A recreational campfire is a very small fire, no greater than 3‐feet in diameter, with flames no more than 2‐feet high. The purpose of the campfire would be for a cooking or warming fire. This fire would NOT be used for burning of waste material of any kind.


It is recommended that even a recreational campfire is at least 25‐feet away from any structures or burnable fuels, such as grass or over‐hanging trees. Also, it is important to have some fire protection on hand, such as shovels, access to a working garden hose, and/or a fire extinguisher. Of course, you would want to have a competent adult with the fire at all times. And most important: when you are finished, be sure that your fire is dead‐out: which means pour water on it, stir it up, and repeat! When you are finished, the fire coals or ashes should be cool to the touch.

Note: For a recreational campfire, you do not need to have a burn permit. However, it is still important to check the Missoula County website to see if outdoor burning is open for that given day.

I want to have a bon fire. Can I?

The true answer to this is, “It depends.” In Missoula County, in order to have a ceremonial bonfire, this must be a fire for an organization‐related event. This also requires a special form called a “Bonfire Permit” that must be initially picked up at the Missoula County Health Department. This type of permit requires signatures from the Fire Department (typically the Fire Marshal), the Sheriff’s Office, and the Health Department.

In many cases, when people say a “bon fire,” they may be referring to a burn pile. If that is the case, you can go to to purchase a Missoula County burn permit. Please note that there is a fee of $5.00 for this type of burn permit, that open burning is from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and that you will need to activate your burn permit each day that you want to burn. For more information regarding outdoor burning, please see our page regarding burn permits.

I’d like to visit a fire station. Is that possible?

If you would like to schedule a station tour, please call our Station 1 Headquarters at 406‐549‐6172, during normal business hours. For all station tours, we do request at least two‐weeks’ notice. Please give us your name, phone number, the size of your group, and whether you would prefer a morning or an afternoon tour. If bringing children, we request to have the approximate age range and number of children attending. Once we have your information, one of our MRFD Firefighters will call you back to confirm a date and time for your visit. Of course, we must remind you that if the engine crew gets dispatched by 911, they may have to leave suddenly due to emergency response. But we will make every effort to accommodate your request.

I need a CPR class. Where should I go?

Currently, The Missoula Rural Fire District does not have the resources to provide general CPR classes to the public. Local CPR classes are offered to the public through the Lifelong Learning Center. Please call them at (406) 549-8765, or go to their website at for more information.