Madison River Death

(Gallatin County, Mont) On September 29th, 2020 at 1:45, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, Three Forks Ambulance, and Three Forks Fire Department responded to the lower Madison River, approximately two miles north of Cobblestone Fishing Access, for a canoe that had flipped over due to a large cottonwood tree/snag in the river channel.

Two fishermen found one man on a gravel bank with minor injuries and deceased man still in the vessel, caught in the snag. The reporting fishermen were able to get cell service to call dispatch. With the help of deputies and Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, all parties were accounted for and recovered. Cause of death is under investigation by the Gallatin County Coroner’s Office.

The deceased man has been identified as Scot E. Smith II of Belgrade.

Photo courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

9/30/2020 Update on COVID-19 in Gallatin County


For immediate release: September 30, 2020

As of Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020, at 12 p.m. Gallatin County has 36 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, for a cumulative total of 1,473. There are 150 confirmed active cases and five current hospitalizations. There have been a total of 1,319 people recovered in Gallatin County. Four people have died from COVID-19 complications.

See the full press release here.

The Gallatin City-County Health Department Call Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions about COVID-19. Reach the Call Center by phone at 406-548-0123 or email at callcenter@readygallatin.com.

The most accurate local source of information remains the GCCHD website.

Bear Canyon Low-Angle Rescue

(Gallatin County, Mont) At 7:40 pm on September 29, 2020, Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue was dispatched to Bear Canyon for a woman who suffered traumatic injuries after to a rock-climbing fall. Search and Rescue volunteers reached the patient and used technical rescue skills to perform a low-angle rescue to bring her back to the trail. A low-angle rescue involves dozens of rescuers setting up anchor points, creating pulley systems, and using specialized belay and patient litter packaging techniques to carefully move the patient to a safe place. The patient was then transported to the trailhead and transferred to American Medical Response to be taken to Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital. The patient was treated for non-life threatening injuries to her head, arm, and leg.

Photos courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

Bridger Foothills Fire Summary

(Gallatin County, Mont) On September 5, 2020, the Bridger Foothills fire went from approximately 400 acres to over 7000 in a 6-hour period. This type of wind and fire behavior is extremely fast and dangerous. When you combine the canyon topography with residences located on long winding roads surrounded by forest, warnings and evacuations were extremely dangerous and difficult.

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office warned and/or evacuated the following a total of 728 residences and 1674 people:

  • 588 residences (1352 people) in Gallatin County
  • 140 residences (322 people) in Park County

The evacuation area (without Bracket Creek/Skunk Creek) is 165 sq miles – see map.

Damage:

  • 28 homes lost
  • 3 injuries, all firefighters
  • 0 lives lost

The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office had 42 deputies (out of 62) who worked the fire, totaling approximately 800 overtime hours on top of regular hours worked. The following law enforcement agencies assisted with road blocks and traffic control: Park County Sheriff’s Office, Sweetgrass County Sheriff’s Office, Carbon County Sheriff’s Office, Bozeman Police Department, MSU Police Department, Montana Highway Patrol, and US Forest Service.

Sheriff Brian M. Gootkin

Map of evacuation area courtesy of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office

9/29/2020 Update on COVID-19 in Gallatin County

For immediate release: September 29, 2020

As of Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, at 12 p.m. Gallatin County has 12 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, for a cumulative total of 1,436. There are 132 confirmed active cases and three current hospitalizations. There have been a total of 1,300 people recovered in Gallatin County. Four people have died from COVID-19 complications.

See the full press release here.

The Gallatin City-County Health Department Call Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions about COVID-19. Reach the Call Center by phone at 406-548-0123 or email at callcenter@readygallatin.com.

The most accurate local source of information remains the GCCHD website.

9/28/2020 Update on COVID-19 in Gallatin County

For immediate release: September 28, 2020

As of Monday, Sept. 28, 2020, at 12 p.m. Gallatin County has 63 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 since Friday, for a cumulative total of 1,424. There are 148 confirmed active cases and three current hospitalizations. There have been a total of 1,272 people recovered in Gallatin County. Four people have died from COVID-19 complications.

See the full press release here.

The Gallatin City-County Health Department Call Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions about COVID-19. Reach the Call Center by phone at 406-548-0123 or email at callcenter@readygallatin.com.

The most accurate local source of information remains the GCCHD website.

Fraudulent Unemployment Claims

Recently the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office has received multiple reports regarding fraudulent unemployment claims. Most reports involve an unknown person having obtained the victim’s Social Security number and date of birth and filing a fraudulent claim through the Montana Department of Labor and Industry in an attempt to receive money.

If your employer receives an unemployment notice that you didn’t file, immediately contact the Montana Department of Labor and Industry with the claim number on the fraudulent claim. The Department of Labor and Industry will put a freeze on the claim to prevent any funds or letters from being released.

If a fraudulent claim has been filed, your Social Security number may be comprised. Below are a couple of steps to prevent any further fraudulent activity under your SSN or name.

  1. Contact the three major credit companies and informed them that your SSN may be compromised. This creates a record and allows them to freeze your credit score if necessary.
  2. Contact your local Social Security Office and inform them that your SSN may be compromised. The Social Security Office will not issue a new SSN but if asked they may put an alert on your account that prevents any business from being conducted under your SSN without showing a photo ID. This would prevent someone from creating a social security account online, ordering a new Social Security Card, applying for benefits, etc.
  3. Contact the financial institutions you bank with and inform them that your SSN may be compromised. Let them know where you are so they can keep an eye out for unusual activity.
  4. Pay close attention to your bank account and credit rating; if you notice any unfamiliar transactions, contact the Sheriff’s Office to file a report.

9/25/2020 Update on COVID-19 in Gallatin County


For immediate release: September 25, 2020

As of Friday, Sept. 25, 2020, at 12 p.m. Gallatin County has 30 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, for a cumulative total of 1,361. There are 134 confirmed active cases and three current hospitalizations. There have been a total of 1,223 people recovered in Gallatin County. Four people have died from COVID-19 complications.

The Sept. 25 weekly COVID-15 surveillance report can be found here.

See the full press release here.

Gallatin City-County Health Officer Matt Kelley will be having a virtual press conference today, Friday, Sept. 25 at 1 PM. He will be providing a local COVID-19 update and answering any questions you may have. How to call in:

Online:
https://zoom.us/j/91310751159?pwd=blBVeHJHK1lBZ1hod1ZDUDU2RmVLdz09
Meeting ID: 913 1075 1159
Passcode: GCCHD

Phone:
+1 253-215-8782
Meeting ID: 913 1075 1159
Passcode: 110550

The Gallatin City-County Health Department Call Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions about COVID-19. Reach the Call Center by phone at 406-548-0123 or email at callcenter@readygallatin.com.

The most accurate local source of information remains the GCCHD website.

Red Flag Warning in Gallatin County

For immediate release: September 24, 2020

A red flag warning is in effect in the Gallatin Valley until 9 PM on Thursday, Sept. 24. This means that crucial fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly, due to a combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures.

Strong west winds will spread east across the ear this morning into early this afternoon. Winds will be 35 to 45 mph with gusts mostly up to 65 mph. The lowest humidity will occur across lower elevation grassland areas where vegetation is driest. This could contribute to rapid spread if a fire develops.

We urge everyone to exercise extreme caution during the duration of this red flag warning. Over the years, we have seen first-hand how fast-moving fires can impact the valley during similar weather conditions. Note that open burning that requires a burn permit is currently closed in all county fire districts.

Thank you for your cooperation.

9/24/2020 Update on COVID-19 in Gallatin County


For immediate release: September 24, 2020

As of Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020, at 12 p.m. Gallatin County has 34 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, for a cumulative total of 1,331. There are 116 confirmed active cases and three current hospitalizations. There have been a total of 1,211 people recovered in Gallatin County. Four people have died from COVID-19 complications.

See the full press release here.

The Gallatin City-County Health Department Call Center is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions about COVID-19. Reach the Call Center by phone at 406-548-0123 or email at callcenter@readygallatin.com.

The most accurate local source of information remains the GCCHD website.