TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Fiber Optics Cut Causes Sprint Service Interuption

Fiber Optics Cut Causes Sprint Service Interuption

Associated Press News Wire (
Mon, 9 Jan 2006 22:07:25 -0600

Sprint Nextel Corp.'s wireless, long-distance and Internet customers
along the West Coast were without service for several hours Monday
after a fiber-optic cable was cut west of Phoenix.

The problem was compounded by network repairs near Reno, Nev., that
had forced the company to route calls from that region through the
Phoenix lines, spokesman John Taylor said.

Taylor said both cables were repaired by 7 p.m. EST, and that service
had been restored in the affected areas. He said he didn't know how
many customers nationwide had lost service.

The cable cut, between Phoenix and Palm Springs, Calif., happened
about 3:30 p.m. EST, Taylor said, but he said company officials didn't
know yet what caused it.

"It affected (network) traffic going to and coming from the West Coast
and other Western parts of the U.S.," Taylor said. But some internet
service providers such as reported that customers were
affected in other parts of the country as well.

The emergency work near Reno was in response to cable that was cut
after heavy rains washed out a railroad where the cable was buried, he

"Where the cut happened was inaccessible by car," Taylor said. "Crews
went in on the railroad. They carried cable in, stringing it through
the trees."

He said the outage, which lasted about 3 1/2 hours, affected customers
of the both the Sprint PCS and the Nextel cell phone
services. Residential and business wireline customers lost service in
the affected areas as well.

Though the bulk of the outages were in the West, Taylor said isolated
outages also were reported in other parts of the country, including in
West Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Sprint Nextel is based in Reston, Va., and has an operational
headquarters in Overland Park, Kan.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.

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