Southern Cross Cables will sue for damages after outage

Southern Cross Cables Ltd. (SCC), will be seeking legal compensation from the owners of the ship that severed the cable in a storm outside Sydney's harbor last week.

Ross Pfeffer, director of Asia Pacific region for SCC, says the costs involved in repair are "fairly major".

"We pay for ships to be on standby anyway but there will be additional costs." He says the matter is "being pursued" not only by SCC but by another telecommunications carrier which also suffered cable damage by the same ship.

Pfeffer is not impressed by the break in Sydney or by the power system problem in the Nedonna cable station on the west coast of the U.S. that struck later in the week.

"This is a brand new network, brand new equipment, brand new systems, state of the art. It's a multi-segment loop network and there aren't many networks in the world that are multi-segment."

Pfeffer says the power outage involved a power module and its back-up device.

"It's the first time that particular equipment has failed in that way and there are some major investigations going on at the moment."

Pfeffer says having both incidents occur in the same week is "Sod's Law" (Murphy's Law) but the network will be re-configured to cope with this kind of double hit.

"But that's a non-trivial change to the network I might add. It's a major change."

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