Montana Public Radio

Libby Montana

A file photo courtesy MT DNRC Fire
Montana DNRC

Lightning on Friday afternoon resulted in several fire starts across Northwest Montana, some of which were not detected until Sunday.

Montana's Department of Natural Resources and Conservation reports numerous fires scattered throughout the Pleasant Valley/Happy’s Inn/ACM/Fisher River area.

David McCumber, editor of the Montana Standard in Butte, MT.
Mike Albans

In 2009 Montana Senator Max Baucus helped write special provisions into the Affordable Care act that ensure extra help and healthcare are available to residents in Libby who are suffering from asbestos-related disease. But some Montana residents are concerned that if Obamacare is repealed and replaced, these provisions will disappear.

MTPR's Nora Saks speaks with David McCumber, editor of the Montana Standard to learn more.

Snow will once again return to the area Tuesday afternoon through Wednesday morning across central Idaho and from the Mission Valley southward across western Montana.
National Weather Service Missoula

National Weather Service meteorologists warned us about a big winter event and boy were they right. As promised, a gigantic winter storm barreled headlong into northwest Montana and left a ton of snow in its wake:

Libby Superfund map.
US Environmental Protection Agency

People living in Libby and Troy have until the end of March to contact the Environmental Protection Agency to have their houses checked for asbestos contamination for free. The EPA issued a "last call" notice Monday.

10th annual Vets for Vets Stand Down in Great Falls
St. Vincent de Paul of North Central Montana

Vietnam veterans probably remember "stand downs" - those safe retreats for units returning from combat duty.

Ben Wight,  American Red Cross Armed Forces Coordinator in Great Falls, says stand downs, "represented a time in which you brought the troops back to get them showered up, resupplied and gave them a couple of days off to regroup until they put them back in the field.”

Wight is helping organize The 10th annual Vets for Vets Stand Down this week in Great Falls. It will bring together people and groups who want to give aid and comfort to Montana veterans who’ve fallen on tough times.

Downtown Libby, MT.
libbymt.com

Funding for a Libby asbestos program is now on hold while the federal government investigates allegations of misspent grant money.

Libby’s Asbestos Resource Program helps residents manage asbestos if they plan to disturb soil on their property. It’s funded by a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Lincoln County may need to reimburse the Environmental Protection Agency for misspent grant money. The county gets a grant from the EPA to help reduce exposure to asbestos at Libby’s Superfund Site.

Libby Superfund map.
US Environmental Protection Agency

August often means peak wildfire season in Northwest Montana, as thunderstorms spin off lightning strikes into forests that are dried out by a summer’s worth of heat.

And wildfires are especially concerning east of Libby, where the former W.R. Grace asbestos mine sits, surrounded by the Kootenai National Forest.

Downtown Libby, MT.
libbymt.com

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today it is giving final approval to the Libby Superfund asbestos cleanup program. Work to clean up the town started about 15 years ago.

Wind, Flooding Problems Across Western Montana

Dec 9, 2015
National Weather Service Missoula, MT

Severe wind and flooding was reported from all across the western parts of the state today. Helena seemed to be hit the hardest with wind.

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