Openserve has stated that the break in the SAT3/WASC cable near Congo has been repaired.
The cable was repaired by the team aboard the repair ship Leon Thevenin, and follows earlier repairs on the WACS cable.
“This concludes a long and complex restoration process of an unprecedented simultaneous cable break of two Atlantic-Ocean-based submarine cable systems: the South Atlantic 3/West Africa Submarine Cable (SAT3/WASC) and the West African Cable System (WACS),” said Openserve.
The cable breaks had caused reduced international Internet connectivity speeds for South Africans – which started on 16 January 2020.
“South Africans can now breathe a sigh of relief as international connectivity capacity returns to normal.”
The two cable systems link South Africa and several other African countries with Europe. These links provide the continent with fast international connectivity.
Shunt fault repair
Openserve said the repair ship will now proceed to the coast of Ghana, and start a power-related (shunt fault) repair on the WACS cable.
“This fault is not affecting traffic on WACS. If conditions allow, the entire mission is still set to be completed around 25 February, with the vessel returning to dock in Cape Town,” said the company.
It added that as part of its “internal close-out procedure”, Openserve’s teams will analyse the “full impact of this unusual dual break on its international connectivity capacity”.
“This exercise will be conducted with a view to minimising, and possibly mitigating, the impact on the South African broadband ecosystem should the country find itself dealing with a similar catastrophic event in future,” said Openserve.