A suspected explosive device was found earlier this month at the Williams’ Bridge Fishing Access Site along the Jefferson River near Three Forks.
Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue personnel found what appeared to be a pipe bomb in the river while conducting training at the site. Game wardens with Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks closed the site and the nearby Sappington Bridge Fishing Access Site during the investigation.
Explosive ordinance disposal technicians from Malmstrom Air Force Base near Great Falls came to the site and detonated the device. Williams’ Bridge and Sappington Bridge fishing access sites were reopened to the public later that morning.
The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office is leading the ongoing investigation into the device.
“We’re grateful to Gallatin County and Malmstrom Air Force Base personnel for their collaborative response in this situation. Thanks to these efforts, we were able to safely reopen these sites to the public,” said FWP Warden Capt. Adam Pankratz. “This is also a good reminder to use caution and carefully inspect items we would normally think of as litter before picking them up.”
Those with information that may be helpful in this investigation are asked to contact the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office at 406-582-2100.