Health problems linger for Seeley Lake residents months after Rice Ridge Fire

It’s been nearly 19 months since the Rice Ridge Fire tore through the small town of Seeley Lake.

Today, residents are still feeling the effects from that wildfire's smoke.

The megafire was sparked by lightning in July 2017 and burned more than 160,000 acres.

And with the flames came the smoke for months.

At Monday night's community council meeting in Seeley Lake, residents were given a deeper look at data collected from a study conducted by University of Montana researchers.

They studied the lung function, blood pressure, heart rate and behavior of 95 men and women from Seeley Lake.

They found that the majority of people continue to experience decreased lung capacity with men suffering from the problem worse than women.

The community council vice chair told Angela Marshall that UM received additional grant money to conduct further testing on the effects the 2017 Rice Ridge Fire had on people in Seeley Lake.

That testing is expected to be done this spring.

KTMF News Anchor

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