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.
Saturday evening at 6:40 a house fire was reported in the 9800 block of Butler Creek Road. Missoula County Sheriff’s Department spokesmen Jason Johnson says one man was killed in the fire, which Johnson says may have also involved an explosion of some type.
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’.
Firefighters are currently on the scene of three new lightning caused wildfires burning in the Bitterroot National Forest. All of the fires were discovered this afternoon and were likely started by lightning from last night’s dry thunderstorms. Two firefighters were flown in by helicopter to one of the more remote fires burning on the West Fork Ranger District northwest of Bare Cone Lookout near Watchtower trailhead. All of the fires are currently less than one acre in size.
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.
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.
Missoula County Sheriff’s Department Public Information Officer Jason Johnson sent KGVO News a press release this afternoon regarding the ongoing search for missing 26 year-old Matthew Charlick of Missoula.
A few minutes after 10 o’clock Sunday night, folks in the Seeley Lake area felt the earth move twice with a magnitude 3.7 earthquake, preceded just 25 seconds before by a smaller quake with a magnitude of 3.1 on the Richter Scale. The quake was felt as far away as Ovando, Ronan and even Helena.
Ravalli County Sheriff Chris Hoffman says an arrest has been made in the armed robbery of the Stevensville Super One Food Store that occurred on June 17th. Hoffman says 29 year-old John Joseph Stark was arrested at his home after a search warrant for his home was carried out by Ravalli County authorities.
As of Sunday night, there seems to be some question as to whether or not the scheduled second debate between incumbent Senator Jon Tester and his Republican challenger Denny Rehberg on Sunday, June 24th at the Montana Broadcasters Association convention in Whitefish will take place
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