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One Fatality, Three Serious Injuries Confirmed at Ice Cave Collapse
CONTACT:  Shari Ireton, Director of Communications
VERLOT, Wash. - Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue has confirmed one fatality at the partial collapse of the Big Four Ice Caves earlier today.  One adult female and two adult males were transported from the area by Airlift Northwest with serious injuries to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.  In addition, one juvenile female was transported via ground to Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett with minor injuries.
The initial call came in to 911 around 5:38 p.m. and it is estimated that the collapse occurred around 45 minutes earlier.  The Sheriff’s Office helicopter rescue team was able to reach the three seriously injured people and transport them to the Big Four Ice Caves picnic area, where they were delivered to AirLift Northwest.
The Big Four Ice Caves area is closed until further notice while search and rescue teams assess the area for recovery of the deceased victim.  Due to the fragile nature of the ice at the caves because of hot weather and rock fall from overhead, teams are working to ensure the safety of all rescue personnel.  The recovery efforts have been suspended for the evening.
The next update will be at 10 a.m. tomorrow.