Cable ship Leon Thevenin departed Cape Town Harbour on Wednesday night and will sail to offshore Angola where the first steps of the physical repair on damaged undersea cables – South Atlantic 3/West Africa Submarine Cable (SAT3/WASC) and the West African Cable System (WACS) – will begin.
The vessel has been dispatched from the Cape Town Harbour by the maintenance and operations sub-committees of the SAT3/WASC and WACS consortia owing to a simultaneous dual cable break that occurred last week.
The breaks have resulted in South African Internet users, whose Internet service providers are connected to international connectivity on both or either of these cable systems, experiencing reduced speed on international browsing and in some cases increased latency.
There is also an impact on international voice calling and mobile roaming.
Following delays caused by weather conditions last weekend, loading of the vessel with all gear and material required for the undersea cable repairs was completed by Wednesday evening.
The Leon Thevenin then set sail from South African shores with Chief of Mission Didier Mainguy and 53 other crew members on board.
A senior representative from the WACS and SAT3 consortium forms part of the ship’s crew.
Weather conditions permitting, it is anticipated that the vessel will reach its first repair site on the evening of January 28.
Telkom’s Openserve says it will continue to maintain interface with the consortiums and their original equipment manufacturer partners until both cable systems are up and running again.