UPDATE: JULY 26 AT 5:15 P.M.

Red Lodge Fire Rescue released an update on Dan's condition on Monday.
 
They wrote:
 
 
Dan is improving slowly but surely. His lungs are better and he is healing well. The staff at the hospital are doing physical therapy with him a couple of times a day. All of his needs are being met with exemplary care.
 
The positive thoughts and prayers are working! He is going to need support and encouragement in the months to come and his family is so appreciative of everyone that is behind him.

UPDATE: JULY 22 AT 2:53 P.M.

Dan is recovering after a successful second surgery Thursday to remove all of the burned areas, except those on his face, Red Lodge Fire Rescue reports.
 
As the burns on his face continue to heal, Red Lodge Fire Rescue says doctors are hoping to remove his intubation tube this weekend. However, they are being extra cautious because Dan has a "touch of pneumonia" and they are waiting to see how he responds to antibiotics.
 
Red Lodge Fire Rescue says healing energy from the public is much appreciated.

UPDATE: JULY 19 AT 4:45 P.M.

Red Lodge Fire Rescue released an update on Dan's condition following his first surgery.
 
They wrote:
 
Dan went through his first of many surgical procedures today at the University of Utah Burn Center. The surgery was successful and he has been alert and is communicating with the family and firefighters that are with him. The recovery process will be long and difficult. It is expected that he will be there for about six months. We all appreciate the tremendous support from everyone across the region. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers.
 
A GoFundMe has been set up to help Dan that you can donate to here.
 

UPDATE: July 17 AT 3:01 P.M.

The firefighter injured Friday on the Harris Fire near Joliet has been identified as Dan Steffensen.

According to Red Lodge Fire, Dan has been a firefighter with them since 2015.

“In 2017 Dan was selected as volunteer “Firefighter of the Year” and works on the fuel mitigation/Initial Attack crew where in the summers he works to reduce hazardous fuels around homes and responds to emerging wildland fires,” Red Lodge Fire said in a release. “He is a nationally qualified wildland firefighter and has fought fires in Montana, Oregon, California and other western states as an engine boss and tender operator.”

The other Red Lodge firefighter on the two-person crew was identified as Scott Wilson.

Scott was not injured and joined the fire department this year after retiring to Red Lodge.

Dan and Scott were reportedly fighting the Harris Fire when strong winds suddenly shifted toward them.

Dan tried to reach safety but was overrun by the fast moving fire.

Scott informed the incident commander and acted to get Dan to Emergency Care.

Due to the severity of his burns, Dan has been admitted to the University of Utah Burn Center in Salt Lake City, and according to Red Lodge Fire, he is in serious condition.

His family and firefighting colleagues are traveling to be with him.

A GoFundMe has been set up to help Dan that you can donate to here.

“We’d like to thank the wildland firefighting community for reaching out to us with offers of help and words of support. Please keep Dan and his family in your thoughts and prayers during these difficult times,” said Fire Chief Tom Kuntz. “This event is a reminder that firefighting is dangerous and we are truly grateful to those who answer the call to help others in time of need.”


PREVIOUS COVERAGE:

JOLIET, Mont. - A firefighter is getting treatment for severe burn injuries after Fire Engine 78 was burned over Friday while crews worked the Harris Fire near Joliet.

According to a Facebook post from Red Lodge Fire Rescue, the two person engine crew was attacking the fire when the wind shifted direction and the fire overtook the crew.
 
One Red Lodge firefighter suffered severe burn injuries and was transported to the hospital by ambulance, then flown to Salt Lake City for treatment.
 
Governor Greg Gianforte released the following statement on the incident:
 
"A Red Lodge firefighter, who was combating a wildfire today, suffered serious injuries. Firefighting is dangerous, challenging, heroic work. Our hearts go out to this courageous firefighter, his family, his friends and all who are working to protect our communities from wildfire. I ask all Montanans to join me in praying for his full recovery and for the safety of all our brave firefighters."
 
The status of the firefighter is unknown at this time.

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