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Emergency work disrupts communications

TELEPHONE and internet services in Shetland are suffering from reduced capacity while BT Openreach carries out emergency work on Faroese Telecom’s undersea cable between Orkney and Shetland.

The work could last up to 72 hours, but it is expected to be completed sooner than that.

Islanders calling Shetland Islands Council or NHS Shetland on Thursday afternoon could not get through, and they are advised to keep trying until they are successful.

The council’s website is also down, while Lerwick arts venue Mareel posted a message on Facebook saying it was unable to receive phone calls or email, take card payments or print tickets.

Other local and national services are also affected.

A spokesman for BT Openreach said: “Due to a damaged subsea cable we’re aware that some customers in Shetland may be experiencing problems connecting to broadband.

“We are working to restore services as soon as we can and we’re sorry for any inconvenience.”

Shetland Telecom said its services were all working as normal as they were rerouted via Faroese Telecom’s wider network.