Some sort of orderwire channel might be helpful in this situation as well,
as long as the fiber is up, youll have a voice grade line to the NOC.
We recently had a piece of equipment fail outside of Bronson, FL. This was
in a regeneration hut, 50 miles from almost anywhere useful. There is no
cellular service and no POTs in the HUT. The closest employee was a woman
who although bright was not very familiar with the equipment installed.
Because the management channel (IP) was still working to the site, an
engineer here in Quincy, MA was able to step her through fixing the problem
using nothing but IRC and two-way pager. It took her 35 minutes to correct
Harder than with a phone? Yes. Impossible? No. Without that IP channel
running? It would have taken closer to an hour and a half by my guess but
still doable. Smoke signals or semaphore? I won't hazard a guess.