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Cable break knocks out broadband for many

ENGINEERS are working to fix a break in a cable which has knocked out broadband connections for hundreds of islanders in Shetland.

 It is understood that a digger operator working for one of BT’s contractors accidentally dug up a fibre optic cable which runs between Maywick and the centre of Lerwick.

The cable – laid as part of Shetland Telecom’s SIC-aided plans to upgrade the isles’ broadband infrastructure – appears to have been dug up at around 10am on Tuesday morning.

Shetland Telecom described it as a “major break” which required a “complete replacement of a section of fibre”, and said it hoped the service would be restored before midday on Wednesday.

A Digital Scotland spokesman said: “Contractors working on the Digital Scotland project cut through a Shetland Telecom cable at Sandwick earlier today [Tuesday].

“The cable was not marked on their road maps and could not be seen in the road as it had recently been resurfaced, obscuring where the cable had been buried, some two-and-a-half inches under the surface.

“The contractors had liaised with the council prior to commencing the roadworks but were not made aware of this cable.”

The spokesman added that the contractors had helped Shetland Telecom to reconnect the cable, adding: “We don’t know how many people lost service but can confirm that BT’s network has not been affected.”