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Emergency pay phone near ice caves reinstalled after outcry

KOMO file photo

VERLOT, Wash. - A pay phone described as vital in emergency situations has been reinstalled at a ranger station northeast of Everett.

The Daily Herald reports that Frontier Communications on Tuesday confirmed it had removed and reinstalled the phone at the U.S. Forest Service Verlot Public Service Center.

The phone was brought back after a Sunday story in the newspaper and on KOMO News featured authorities' concerns about the phone being gone.

The phone, 11 miles east of Granite Falls, is often the best option for reaching 911 from the Mountain Loop Highway, which has little to no cellphone coverage.

Most emergency calls along the highway have been made from that phone, including those reporting deadly collapses at the Big Four Ice Caves. The ranger station has a phone inside, but limited office hours.

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