Kelly Hodel / Stuff
Internet fiber stopped working in Taumarunui early Monday and is yet to be restored.
A “sag” in a road is the reason Taumarunui hasn’t had fiber internet for over a day.
About 1,200 customers in and around Taumarunui – including businesses – were affected by the outage, which began at around 1.30am on Monday, telecommunications infrastructure company Chorus said.
For parents, this means entertaining children offline during school holidays, eftpos is down in many stores, the hospital is about to get temporary wifi and there are reports of ATMs in the center.
Chorus said that after delays due to travel times and remote interchange locations, the damaged cable was found near Te Kūiti on Monday afternoon.
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“Earth movement on a road … caused a 30cm ‘sag’ in the road surface,” said spokesman Steve Pettigrew.
The move had severed the fiber connection, he said, but getting the cable out safely required a backhoe, civilian contractors and traffic management.
The crew was working at the site on Tuesday afternoon to expose the cable, of which around 50-100m would be damaged.
Once exposed, technicians would splice replacement fiber optic cable to the damaged part “and broadband services will gradually be restored,” Pettigrew said.
Chorus apologized for the disruption to broadband services and was working to restore services as quickly as possible, Pettigrew said.
Internet providers Spark and 2degrees said they had not received an estimate of when this might be fixed.
Internet, telephone and computers were assigned to Taumarunui Hospital, although clinical services were maintained, according to a statement from Te Whatu Ora Waikato.
Laptops with wireless connections had been distributed to enable staff to continue at short notice and temporary Wi-Fi was to be set up late Tuesday afternoon, acting district coordinator Chris said. Lowry.
“The staff at Taumarunui Hospital should be commended for the way they responded.”
At the Forgotten World Adventures office on the main street of Taumarunui, Cassie Kelly was spotting her cell phone and unable to use eftpos.
“Everyone on fiber in town is completely down,” she said.
“I just switched to fiber myself a few weeks ago, so I’m pretty drained.”
But she was better off than her father, whose cell phone also had no coverage.
It was the longest internet outage she had experienced in the city and she said it was difficult for parents trying to entertain children during their school holidays.
Down the road at King Country Wheel Alignment, Nick Wood was able to run as usual.
He is with the satellite phone and internet provider AoNet, a small provider that he chose to support locally and because he could talk to someone directly if there was a problem.
However, he had received fewer bill payments than usual for this time of the month, which he attributed to people not being able to access internet banking.
“People don’t pay because they can’t,” he said.
Spark said in a statement that a cut fiber on a Chorus line between Hamilton and Taumarunui was impacting some of its broadband and mobile customers.
For 2 degrees, high-speed fiber connections and some towers were affected, according to a statement.
“Chorus contractors are on hand to repair the cut now, but there is currently no ETA on how to resolve this issue.”
Chorus said it will update broadband providers on the fix, so customers should check with their internet provider.