South African internet users have been suffering from some major downtime and connection issues over the past few weeks. This was all due to a Wacs undersea cable off the west coast of Africa. According to Business Insider, the cable actually suffered a short circuit while trapped under heavy sediment. The cable connects SA to the world and with it down, users suffered some harsh connectivity issues across gaming and especially social media.
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The good news, the South African National Research and Education Network (SARen) reported that the repairs to the Wacs S1 cable were completed on Thursday afternoon. The photos which you can see below show a burnt and damaged cable which was the cause of the issue.
According to SARen, the cable got damaged due to heavy sediment caused by harsh waters from the Congo River flowing into the area where the cable was laid. This built-up pressure on top of the cable causing it to short circuit. The Congo River has received heavy rains over the past few weeks which would explain why both the cables were broken (the Sat-3 and Wacs).
According to the anonymous source who sent the photos to Business Insider, the undersea cable “looks burned, and deep down, there isn’t much sources of heat. It was either a short circuit from the power that goes to the repeater or from a geothermal from a small ocean volcano,”
Another photo shows the repaired cable which now has a protective cover on it to hopefully prevent the same damage from taking place. There is some bad news though. Repairs are not complete just yet. According to REN Alerts, the Leon Thevenin is no making its way to the next destination – the site of a big cable break on the South Atlantic 3/West Africa (sat-3/Wacs) system. Once completed, the vessel will then head to the break near the UK coast at the Wacs S4 site.
It is a much larger operation than anyone expected and we are sure everyone in SA is grateful for all the hard work the team have put into making these repairs possible. Hopefully, the South African internet issues are fixed soon.
Photo credit – Anonymous Source via Business Insider