According to the Tertiary Education and Research Network of South Africa (TENET), the operating partner of the South African national research and education network, there was a break on WACS cable system at 23:28pm UTC on Friday March 27. The WACS break was occured between between Seixal, Portugal, and Highbridge, England.
It said the WACS break is due to a complete cable cut on segment 4 at 39.0175Km from SV8 Cable Landing Station. It confirmed later that the cut is between Highbridge (UK) and Seixal (Portugal).
This is the second break of WACS. There was a dual-break on WACS and SAT3/WASC cable system on January 16, 2020, the SAT-3/WASC break in the vicinity of Libreville, Gabon, while the Wacs break in the vicinity of Luanda, Angola.
According to Openserve, the wholesale division of Telkom South Africa, the WACS break has high impact on international traffic to South Africa. The degraded performance is being compounded due to SAT3/WASC also being down. The restoration of SAT3 is expected on 2 April 2020, with a cable vessel currently busy with repairs.
South Africa relies on WACS, SAT-3/WASC, SAFE, EASSy, and Seacom cable systems for international bandwidth. WACS and SAT-3/WASC connect South Africa to Europe and West Africa countries, EASSy and Seacom ran along the East coast of Africa and reach Europe and Asia, while SAFE connects South Africa to India and Malaysia.
According to the South African National Research & Education Network (SA NREN), a major user of the WACS cable, the WACS repair was completed on April 3.
In its tweets, SA NREN says: “WACS Outage Update: We have had final confirmation that the WACS repairs are complete and everything is according to specification. This matter is now resolved from an SA NREN perspective.”
SA NREN tweeted: “We are seeing recovery of the SA NREN WACS links as of 07h13 UTC+2 this morning. We are hoping that this is the permanent recovery.”