Ex­perts raise con­cern over At­lantic out­age

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - ATLANTIC -

Last Fri­day’s Bell Aliant out­age in many parts of At­lantic Canada has di­aled up con­cerns among ex­perts about the se­cu­rity of the re­gion’s telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions sys­tem.

Ea­mon Hoey, a man­age­ment con­sul­tant in Toronto who has worked in the field for over four decades, said in an in­ter­view the break­down of Bell’s sys­tem due to cuts in cru­cial fi­bre op­tic links raises ques­tions about whether there is suf­fi­cient backup.

“We need bet­ter net­works. We need more ro­bust net­works. This case in the At­lantic prov­inces sug­gests we don’t have it,” he said on Mon­day from his home in Toronto.

The break­down af­fected emer­gency ser­vices in some parts of the re­gion, caused wide­spread cel­lu­lar tele­phone out­ages on Telus, Bell, Vir­gin and Koodo, and also in­ter­rupted in­ter­net and some land line ser­vices for about four hours, be­gin­ning late Fri­day morn­ing. The Rogers and Eastlink net­works con­tin­ued to op­er­ate.

Emer­gency mea­sures agencies in Nova Sco­tia and New Brunswick said Tues­day they will be in talks with Bell fol­low­ing the out­age.

Hoey says the re­gion’s net­work is heav­ily re­liant on Bell’s fi­bre op­tic sys­tem, and said the CRTC should con­sider the need for more backup meth­ods.

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