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Travelers stranded in the cold in Butte

Posted at 9:50 AM, Oct 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-28 11:50:13-04

BUTTE — Getting stuck in Butte on a cold morning after his connection at the bus depot failed to arrive, Jeramiah Smith found a way to stay warm.

“Just keeping walking, hood up, shivering,” said Smith.

Smith took a bus from Idaho Falls and arrived in Butte just after midnight Tuesday on a Salt Lake Express Bus and learned his next bus to take him home to Seattle would not arrive until the next morning.

He and four other travelers were told the depot would be locked up and they could not wait inside.

“Frigid, I think it was 14 degrees when we got in. You can see this is all I have to wear,” Smith said.

With little money, Smith could not afford a place to stay and couldn’t get assistance for the company he bought the ticket from.

A representative from Salt Lake Express said they only provide a ticket to Butte and Smith needs to make arrangements with another carrier.

Smith said he’s surprised there’s no sheltered place to wait for his bus. “You’re in a cold area, you have to expect for people to be in emergency situations."

Jeremiah said he’s not too concerned for himself because he’s fit and can tolerate the cold, but he’s concerned other people who are more vulnerable might get into the same situation.

“That’s my underlying concern, you know, I’m going to get through this, but going forward, there’s a lot of people, a lot of families that use this service,” said Smith.