National Weather Service forecaster Ryan Leach says Western Montana and Eastern Idaho experienced over a thousand lightning strikes from Sunday’s thunderstorms, however, he says Lake County felt the brunt of the storms.
Missoula Rural Fire investigators have determined that the fatal house fire on Saturday was accidental in nature, and of as yet undetermined origin. Lead investigator Tom Ziegler says it appears the fire started on the deck of the modular home near a propane grill. He says the fire moved from the deck into the home and rapidly burned the entire structure. Missoula Sheriff’s Department Public Information Officer Jason Johnson has identified the victim as Stephen Steadele, whose birth date was given as December 30th, 1951, making him 61 years old.
KGVO News learned from interim University of Montana Athletics Director Jean Gee on Friday that quarterback and running back Gerald Kemp is no longer on the Grizzly football team. Gee says Kemp was removed from the team for ‘violation of team rules’.
Community Medical Center and Providence St. Patrick Hospital have entered into a contractual partnership that will integrate operations of the air ambulance services at the two Missoula hospitals, starting August 13th. Life Flight at St. Patrick Hospital and Care Flight at Community Medical Center have operated independently for several years and have covered emergency calls on a daily, rotational basis.
It has been confirmed through dental records that the body found in the Alberton Gorge was that of the young man who jumped from the Madison Street bridge several weeks ago.Missoula Sheriff’s department Public Information Director Jason Johnson says the 19 year-old University of Montana student and his girlfriend both jumped from the Madison Street Bridge into the Clark Fork River on May 16th. The woman was able to make it to shore, while the young man was swept downstream. Search and Rescue crews were on the scene in minutes looking for the unidentified man, but because of the flood conditions at the time, the body could not be found.
Western Montana will continue to experience very hot, very dry conditions throughout the week and even through the weekend. Forecaster Mike Johnson with the National Weather Service says the hot dry weather, combined with a chance of thunderstorms have created a fire weather alert for the next few days.
The Chrandal Creek fire, approximately 2 miles northwest of Irishmans Rock, in the Hughes Creek drainage is estimated to be 60 acres in size. The fire was lightning caused and was detected on Friday. Acting Bitterroot National Forest spokesperson Betsy Ballard says the fire behavior has been very active Saturday with trees torching and multiple fire spots outside the main fire perimeter. The fire is burning in subalpine fire and beetle killed lodgepole pine. Air support is being provided by 2 helicopters dropping buckets of water on the fire.
After a 44 year-old Anaconda woman was drowned in the Blackfoot River on July 4th, authorities are reminding recreationists who are rafting or tubing on Western Montana rivers to use safety equipment and common sense. Vivaca Crowser is Public Education Coordinator for Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks. She says area rivers are still running high and fast, and the cold water can slow reaction times, especially during the hot days to come next week.
On Wednesday, the 4th of July, Missoula County Deputies responded with emergency workers to the Blackfoot River in the area of the Bonner Mill for a report of a 44 year-old Anaconda woman who had fallen into the river. She and her family were floating the river beginning at the Weigh Station Fishing Access. She became stuck on a log jam and after being freed by her 15 year old nephew she disappeared under water. She has been identified as Colleen Marie Nelson.
The 4th of July is always a big day at the Historical Museum at Fort Missoula, and Wednesday is no exception. Museum Director Bob Brown says the festivities start at 8 am sharp, with a breakfast provided by volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of latter Day Saints. Proceeds will benefit the Friends of the Historical Museum.
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