This is a useful picture in terms of …

Comment posted What’s a fibreoptic cable doing lying on a beach anyway? by newsroom.

This is a useful picture in terms of accessibility – but the cable was still lying on the beach. That has to be mmethod is wildly disproportionate to the value of the infrastructure and the business and personal services it supports.

newsroom also commented

  • The visual evidence of the television footage – with the camera resting on the image of the cut section and the rest of the cable – showed a long continuation of the cable lying on the surface of the beach and vanishing into the tide, with absolutely no trace of its having been dug up anywhere along that length. There was, for example, no visible disturbance to the seaweed, which is easy to spot. I paid particular attention to what was shown – LOOKING for something suggesting it had been dug up. There was nothing, and the reporter’s commentary made no reference to digging up or uncovering the cable in any way.

Recent comments by newsroom

  • Weak, nervous and unsearching: Audit Scotland report into Argyll and Bute Council ADP procurement
    This is a finely balanced point.
    What the report has said is contradictory in spirit because what they said on the lack of correspondence [implicitly of complaint] was intended to exonerate a process in dispute.
    The two third sector organisations that were unable even to bid – because of the same eccentric process that might have disadvantaged actual bidders – had been equally disadvantaged by being misled into thinking they could not responsibly bid.
    Therefore the experience of the two third sector groups provides evidence which contradicts the exoneration of the process founded on the fact that no disappointed bidder had complained to the audit team.
    Beyond that and on a different aspect of this matter – no one is entitled to assume that the lack of complaint and/or correspondence can safely be read as contentment with process.
    Given the performance of Audit Scotland in this review, there will be those who will see no point in bothering with the Commission.
  • Weak, nervous and unsearching: Audit Scotland report into Argyll and Bute Council ADP procurement
    Or both.
  • Is David MacBrayne’s Solent enterprise the signal for the end of Calmac?
    Of course we’re delighted for them – and this will be the enormous fun of a real challenge.
    But because this is not an obvious move – since DML is not a commercial company in any real sense; and because it is a contract where neither DML nor CalMac have much, if any, current expertise, they will have to gear up to do it.
    So we’re looking for the hidden agenda.
    There are curious and interesting implications for the financing of this enterprise; and for their owner, the Scottish Government.
    It’s intriguing – a major surprise development – itself fun – and we will be surprised if our speculative interpretation is finally that far off the mark.
  • Weak, nervous and unsearching: Audit Scotland report into Argyll and Bute Council ADP procurement
    Both Michael Russell and Jackie Baillie responded immediately after the publication of the Audit Scotland report and For Argyll published their responses at once.
  • Housing Services issues: specific failures of Audit Scotland report on Argyll and Bute Council ADP procurement
    What you envisage is in fact the stated practice of a senior council officer who has said to one potential litigant [not in connection with this case because of course the third sector groups could never afford the processes of justice]: ‘We have deeper pockets than you do and we can just continue to appeal. We’ll see you bankrupt’.
    As you say, those ‘deeper pockets’ are filled with public money – our money.

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12 Responses to This is a useful picture in terms of …

  1. BT are not the sharpest knife in the block!

    When my local area had telephone cable taken from each pole and laid in the ditch, they simply left large sections on the surface, despite being informed of this nothing happened……that is until ditch renovation was routinely carried out and a flayer was used to cut back brambles etc…..I think you can see where I’m going! Result a chewed cable, no phones and two services namely council and BT blaming each other. So, your story does not surprise me in the slightest.

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    • The visual evidence of the television footage – with the camera resting on the image of the cut section and the rest of the cable – showed a long continuation of the cable lying on the surface of the beach and vanishing into the tide, with absolutely no trace of its having been dug up anywhere along that length. There was, for example, no visible disturbance to the seaweed, which is easy to spot. I paid particular attention to what was shown – LOOKING for something suggesting it had been dug up. There was nothing, and the reporter’s commentary made no reference to digging up or uncovering the cable in any way.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. Ah. Don’t forget BT have been using special ‘self burying’ cable for many years. For ages there was a large loop of the main cable to the village lying on my beach. It disappeared several years ago.

    It must have buried itself as the phones still work.

    Perhaps BT need to concentrate on developing a ‘high speed’ self burying cable that wouldn’t be noticeable for quite so long.

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  3. 2 things to point out are that, fiber optic cable is very expensive so has to be burried under the sea rather than round land due to cost and logistics (they are burried under the sea all over the world). Secondly, when this cable is installed it is burried under the sea bed but over time the tides and power of the sea will uncover sections. This cable is very tough and will withstand the power of nature but it will not, however, withstand the power of a chainsaw, heavy duty cable cutters or whatever other weapons these thieves decide to use.
    Phone companies spend many £millions every year to combat cable theft and this is now a real problem. More help is needed from local communities and the police to help find these people who are undoubtedly putting real lives at risk

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    • Wrong! see 2 above, and do you realise how deep the oceans are? Cables are not buried under the sea or loch bed, but the point where they are most vulnerable is on the surface before entering the water (fresh or salt). There perhaps they should be fed through buried (metal) duct or duct embedded in concrete.

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  4. I am concerned that given the importance of this cable, and the fact that it linked in the personal alarm call systems for over 200 vunerable elderly folks, that there was no back up system. Even a well buried cable can be the target of thieves..in this case dumb ones, so if vital services are at risk a surely it would make sense to have a more robust back up system…there are a lot of remote homes in this area.

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    • You get what you pay for, if you buy a telephone line then that is what you get. If you need resilience then you install a system with an independent backup connection, perhaps a small mobile phone module built into the unit.

      Many commercial systems specify two independent circuits that never come near each other even when they enter the user’s premises. But it costs a lot more.

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  5. In fairness to BT, there are virtually NO BEACHES on Loch Carron. It appears this cable was on the Stromeferry side of the loch. It could be accessed by parking in a passing place, crossing a fence, crossing the rail line, crossing another fence, then making your way down the rocks to the rocky shoreline.
    That side of the loch is effectively inaccessible and the picture being painted of a cable lying around on a sandy beach is wrong.

    Interestingly, the damage did not effect landline telephone services locally. It did stuff the internet and mobile phones. (except Orange)

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    • This is a useful picture in terms of accessibility – but the cable was still lying on the beach. That has to be mmethod is wildly disproportionate to the value of the infrastructure and the business and personal services it supports.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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