There’s good news for South African internet users: Telkom subsidiary Openserve has told TechCentral that repairs to the Wacs and Sat-3 subsea cables are officially under way.
The cables broke on 6 August in a deep undersea canyon off the coast of the Democratic Republic of Congo. A suspected rockfall severed both cable systems on 6 August. Both Sat-3 and Wacs connect landing stations north of Cape Town to similar facilities in Europe, along Africa’s west coast.
“Openserve is pleased that the restoration work on both undersea cables that experienced a break recently is progressing well,” a Telkom spokesman said.
“Openserve has been collaborating with the consortium partners to facilitate the restoration of the cables and anticipates the Wacs cable will be restored by tomorrow, 6 September.”
The Léon Thévenin, a cable-laying vessel named after a French telegraph engineer, left Cape Town harbour late last month with a crew and equipment to attend to the cable repairs off the coast of the DRC.
Tracking data shows that ship was supposed to arrive on 30 August, but with the last ping recorded on the website MarineTraffic on 28 August off the northern coast of Namibia, it was unclear whether the ship had arrived at its destination.
Openserve did not give details about when the older and lower-capacity Sat-3 cable will be fixed, but once both cables have been repaired, South Africans should experience relief from lag in their internet connections, although most internet service providers have found other routes over which to send their traffic to Europe.
Read: New internet cables save South Africa’s bacon
“The team has made remarkable progress and, although the impact on Openserve was limited due to our investment in other international cable capacity, the restoration will reinstate our customers’ latency and redundancy on the Wacs cable,” said Openserve CEO Althon Beukes. – © 2023 NewsCentral Media
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