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Lightning repairs continue

BT engineers are still working on repairing damage to the telecommunications services across Shetland following last week’s ‘weather bomb’.

Lightning strikes peaked at a rate of around 100 an hour resulting in an unprecedented increase in the number of faults across the network.

Many individual lines were blown and numerous overhead cables serving small clusters of homes were affected.

In some cases engineers repaired damage and installed new equipment only to have it blown by further lightning strikes.

A company spokesman said: “The Orange Mobile transmitter at Voe was knocked out on Sunday; we replaced it only for it to be hit again later that day, so we ended up replacing the equipment twice in one day!”

As engineers prepare to work through the weekend to clear the backlog the spokesman urged the public to report any fault to their service provider.

“In some cases electrical equipment may need to be replaced and this is managed by service providers.

“They will also liaise with BT Openreach on behalf of their customers to organise engineering appointments.”

He added: “Lightning damage is notoriously difficult to repair. It can cause multiple faults on an individual line, so clearing the damage can be painstaking.

“Engineers can clear one fault only to find others further along the line. Damage can also take time to manifest, causing network degradation or equipment to fail several days or even weeks after the initial strike.”

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