County Landfill Open Again After Brief Closure

The scent of what workers thought smelled like natural gas shut down operations at the landfill

By Beacon Staff

The Flathead County landfill is open to the public again after a brief closure Monday morning caused by suspicious gas smells.

According to Flathead County Public Works Director Dave Prunty, customers and staff at the landfill reported smelling an odor reminiscent of natural gas or “burning tires.”

The county shut down the landfill for about an hour to allow NorthWestern Energy employees and emergency responders check through the landfill for any signs of a pipe breach, but found nothing.

“Nobody registered anything anywhere when they were sniffing with their instruments,” Prunty said.

The landfill’s gas-to-energy system was running in check, Prunty said, and any pipe breaks are easily spotted by sensors running along the system.

“We just don’t know what it was,” Prunty said of the mystery odor.

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