Faulty Cables in Red Sea Result in Internet Downtime in Kenya


Kenyans and residents of the wider East Africa region on Sunday experienced internet downtime with most internet users reporting having a hard time browsing.

The internet downtime experienced was attributed to two faulty cables in the Red Sea.

Ben Roberts, the Chief Technology and Innovation Officer reported that three cable system providers were yet to repair the cuts causing the outage.

According to the CTIO, all sub-sea capacity between East Africa and South Africa was down at the time of reporting.

Underwater sea cables at the Red Sea

Photo

Digwatch

“Internet to East Africa is severely impaired.  All sub-sea capacity between East Africa and South Africa is down, stated Roberts.

Further, Roberts confirmed that there was a fault in the Eastern Africa Submarine System (EASSy) cable and another fault in the Seacom submarine cable.

Interestingly it was also reported that the faults from both cables were observed to have occurred at the same time.

EASSy is a 10,000-kilometre submarine cable system along the East Coast of Africa, with 9 landing stations in Sudan, Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania, Comoros, Madagascar, Mozambique and South Africa.

It provides a backhaul system for at least 12 landlocked countries and enabling wide coverage in the East African region.

On the other hand, SEACOM,  a 17,000 km submarine cable connects South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique, Djibouti, France and India.

“EASSy Cable – Fault confirmed, Seacom Cable – Observing Fault that occurred at the same time,  3 cable cuts in Red Sea (Seacom, EIG, AAE1) remain unrepaired,” stated Ben Roberts.

On Sunday, Tanzania was reported to have experienced a total blackout in some areas with some users accessing services intermittently.

“The downtime has affected major network channels, but some service providers have managed to offer limited access. For the majority, it is a complete blackout,” a local daily reported.

Incidentally, this is not the first time that the sub-sea cables have experienced faults in their cable systems.

In March 2024, Kenyans were warned of a two-month internet disruption following a cable break in the Red Sea.

According to previous reports, another warning of internet outage had been issued to Kenyans on February 26 after a fault was experienced in another cable system.
 

A group of people accessing the Internet through smartphones.

Speedefy



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