The cable breaks affecting international Internet connectivity to South Africa should be fully repaired in the coming days, according to the latest updates.
The first cable cable break, on the Wacs system off the coast of the Republic of Congo, has been repaired, while two remaining breaks — on Wacs off the coast of the UK and on Sat-3/Wasc, also near Congo — should be repaired by Sunday, 16 February.
This is according to the Tertiary Education and Research Network of South Africa (Tenet), which has provided regular updates to its users on the progress of repairs to three cable breaks affecting international Internet connectivity in South Africa.
Last weekend, it emerged that the Congo break in the Wacs cable occurred in the trunk section of the system.
“Repair efforts were challenging due to it being the first repair of this nature in a trunk section of the Wacs system. The repair had many technical specifics, tricky fibre management, and demanding jointing and testing operations,” Tenet said.
That break occurred after a section of the Wacs system became trapped and embedded in dense and heavy sediment caused by the flow of turbulent waters in an undersea canyon.
The UK Wacs break is in progress with fault remediation taking place, Tenet said in a tweet on Thursday morning. In Wednesday tweet, it said the Sat-3 cable break is progressing according to schedule, with the work expected to be completed by Sunday.
Update: Progress hampered
Telkom’s wholesale division, Openserve, said late on Thursday that unfavourable conditions at sea have hampered progress.
“The latest changes in the sequence of repairs, as a result of these unforeseen circumstances, will lead to the crew affording an additional day of repair activity at the current break point offshore Congo,” Openserve said.
“It was initially anticipated that this restoration portion of the Sat-/Wasc repair will be completed by 17 February 2020 but has now been rescheduled for completion on Tuesday, 18 February. Thereafter, the ship will proceed to its next location, offshore Ghana, to undertake a power-related (shunt fault) repair on the Wacs cable. If conditions allow, the mission is still set to be completed around 25 February.” — (c) 2020 NewsCentral Media