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Telecom Urges People To Locate Underground Cables

Telecom Urges People To Locate Underground Cables Before They Start Digging

Telecom is asking anyone who does earthworks on public or private land to ring 124, and check before digging that they will not be cutting underground telecommunication cables.

Telecom says this will minimise the occurrence of outages such as the one experienced in Northland yesterday.

A large amount of Telecom’s network infrastructure is underground and in some locations there is a risk of it being cut when people or companies excavate without checking the precise location of cables.

By ringing the Cable Location Service on 124, or faxing for free on 0800 110 124 people can request information or get a Telecom contractor to come out on site and mark out where the underground cables lie.

Telecom Work Management Manager Neil Walker said the 124 number could save time and money.

“Repairing cut cables can be a very costly business - anyone who accidentally cuts cables is responsible for the cost of repairing them,” he said.

Mr Walker said that aside from the financial cost of cutting a cable there are other, more significant impacts.

“Communications these days are more than just about the transporting of conversations. Telecom’s network carries a variety of Data such as TV, EFTPOS, Internet etc in addition to normal voice conversations.

“When things go wrong within our communities, be it an accident, medical emergency, or a fire, it is the Telecom network that carries the message for help.

“The 124 number has been set up to ensure minimal disruption to the network that services millions of New Zealanders,” said Mr Walker.

It can cost anyone who damages a cable over $100,000 to repair it, but those who call 124 customers can receive free information and free cable location plans.

If a cable location representative is requested to visit a site, there may be a fee to recover the contractor costs incurred in locating the cables. These charges range from $65.00 per hour to $160.00 per hour. There is an after hours callout charge of $80.00.

The 124 call centre operates from 7.00am to 7.00pm Monday to Friday and requires a minimum of 24 hours (one working day) notice for on-site locations and a minimum of 48 hours (two working days) notice for issue of cable plans.


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