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SAT-3 cable fault chaos

Posted on Jan 24 in News-Publicby Press OfficerPrint

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By mid=69> Candice Jones, ITWeb online telecoms editor Johannesburg, 22 Jan 2020

Downtime on Telkom’s SAT-3 undersea cable left customers without international Internet access for several hours yesterday afternoon.

According to Telkom, the SAT-3 consortium had planned work on a segment of the cable between Accra, in Ghana, and Abidjan, in the Ivory Coast. The consortium planned downtime of between four and six hours; however, a failure caused the capacity blackout to last longer.

Telkom says the branching units responsible for powering the cable experienced a problem, leaving a mass of local customers without access to international capacity.

SAT-3 connects SA with the southern coast of Europe through its landing stations in Portugal’s Sesimbra and Spain’s Chipiona.

Telkom says the fault on the units was repaired and the cable was up and running again last night.

The consortium has spent a pretty packet getting the cable upgraded in the face of newly-introduced competitor Seacom. The upgrade was completed in October last year. The cable system was boosted to speeds of 340Gbps to cater for growth in demand for international bandwidth.

Telkom’s West Coast equivalent, Safe, was also upgraded to carry a 440Gbps capacity.

As the largest investor, Telkom will want the cables to run at their best over the next few years, since many other competing cables are being landed in the country soon. The most anticipated is the West African Cable System, which holds the investment of all the local operators.

Sentech will land the Africa Coast to Europe cable and the East African Submarine System will also see South African shores as a competing capacity provider.

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