Montana News

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Memorial Highway Dedication to Fallen Grayback Wildland Firefighter Friday in Seeley Lake

The Montana Department of Natural Resources & Conservation is dedicating a stretch of Highway 83 to Grayback Wildland Firefighter Trenton Johnson. Johnson passed away defending the community of Seeley Lake from the 2017 Florence Fire. Clearwater Unit Manager Kristen Baker-Dickinson explains. “In March of this year, Governor Bullock signed SB 260, which dedicated an eight-mile stretch of Highway 83 as the Trenton Johnson Memorial Highway,” Baker-Dickinson said. “This Friday, July 19, they will be performing that dedication in Seeley Lake.” According to Baker-Dickinson, this is a great opportunity to honor and remember Johnson. “Trenton Johnson’s sister, DJ Johnson, reached out to the local Seeley Lake Ranger District, who in turn reached out the Montana DNRC, in an effort to bring everyone together for this highway dedication,” Baker-Dickinson said.
KBAZ-FM 96.3

Crews battle large structure fire on Kalispell’s Main Street

VIDEO: Several agencies responded to a large structure fire at the RE/MAX building on Main Street in Kalispell early Wednesday. Kalispell Assistant Fire Chief Jon Campbell said responders were dispatched after the first call of fire came in around 5:45 a.m. Crews fought the difficult fire for almost four hours. While no injuries have been reported, smoke and water damage to the building is significant. Campbell said the origin and cause of the fire are still under investigation.
KRTV-TV CBS 3 Great Falls

Montana to commemorate 70th anniversary of Mann Gulch tragedy

The 70th anniversary of the Mann Gulch fire tragedy in Montana won’t go unmarked. The U.S. Forest Service and its partners, including the Museum of Mountain Flying, are formulating plans for a public event on Monday, Aug. 5, near the Meriwether Picnic area at the Gates of the Mountains north of Helena. Twelve young Missoula-based smokejumpers and fire guard Jim Harrison of Missoula lost their lives when the routine wildfire blew up on Aug. 5, 1949, in the steep, rocky gulch 40 miles north of Helena. The jumpers were flown to the fire on a Johnson Flying Service Douglas DC-3, N-24320, which has gained recent fame as Miss Montana. The airplane was resurrected by the Missoula flying museum and flown to and from Europe in May and June to help commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day and the 70th anniversary of the Berlin Airlift.
Ravalli Republic

Town Pump Charitable Foundation grant adds Hose Monster to Havre Fire Department arsenal

The Town Pump Charitable Foundation has donated $2,600 worth of equipment to the Havre Fire Department through a grant program, and Assistant Fire Chief Nathan Courtnage said the city's firefighters have already put their new Little Hose Monster to use. Havre's Hose Monster is a part of a 10-piece hydrant flow testing bundle that is used "to measure water flow-rate and to diffuse and divert discharge water in fire pump testing, fire flow testing, and main flushing," according to The Hose Monster Company website. The device is meant to help measure water pressure levels in fire hydrants, which is a process the fire department goes through each year, Courtnage said.
Havre Daily News

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Billings Fire Department faces growing demand with same number of firefighters

VIDEO: The Billings Fire Department has about the same number of firefighters they had 42 years ago. But, they are receiving more calls than ever. In 1977, Billings Fire had about 116 people on staff. Today, they have about 121 people on staff. The big difference is the number of calls. Forty two years ago, they received about 1500 calls a year. Today, they receive over 15,000 calls a year and that number is expected to go up. Billings Fire Department Assistant Fire Chief Matt Hoppel said, "There's days we average 60 calls within the city." Billings Fire has also increased the size of the area it serves, going from 18 square miles 42 years ago, to over 90 square miles today. Hoppel tells me they need more firefighters, and at least one new fire station in the Heights.

Obituary: James A. Jim Malvey, Retired Butte Firefighter/Emergency Medical Technician

James A. “Jim” Malvey passed away on Saturday, July 13, 2019. Jim was born on August 30, 1945 to James “Rass” and Mary (Downey) Malvey. Jim attended St. Patrick’s Grade School and graduated from Boys’ Central High School in 1964. He also attended Montana Tech before being drafted into the United States Army in 1966. He spent the majority of his service time in Germany. In September of 1971 Jim was appointed to the Butte Fire Department where he served as a Firefighter/Emergency Medical Technician for over 24 years. Jim married Louise Newman, but they later divorced. Jim loved snow skiing, fishing, camping and spending time at his cabin on Georgetown Lake. Friends may call on Friday after 10:00 am in St. Patrick’s Catholic Church. Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11:00 am.
Butte Montana Standard

Hill County Disaster and Emergency Services Coordinator: Havre ’dodged a bullet’ during storm

Hill County Disaster and Emergency Services Coordinator Dave Sheppard said Havre "dodged a bullet" Sunday evening when a severe thunderstorm passed just south of the city. "It was looking pretty bad," Sheppard said. Despite the looks of the storm, however, he has not received any calls regarding damage from wind, flooding or lightning. Havre Fire Chief Mel Paulson also said no calls regarding the storm came across his desk yesterday or today. Data collected by the national Weather Service at Havre City-County Airport west of town shows wind gusts reached 44 mph and less than one-tenth of an inch of rain fell there, though the most severe portion of the storm stayed south of the city. Temperatures over the weekend were hot, reaching above 90 degrees Friday through Sunday, but the storm brought relief to that, dragging the temperature from 85 to 67 in a matter of minutes.
Havre Daily News

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