North American Network Operators Group

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Re: MCI WorldCom fiber cut - [belated]

  • From: William Allen Simpson
  • Date: Mon Oct 25 01:05:53 1999

David Lesher wrote:
> A) I've never seen fiber without wire for the locaters to use later.
I've only had the opportunity to watch 5 runs pulled so far: MCI pulled 
a 4" in AA 2 years ago, the city pulled 3 2" together last year, Ameritech 
pulled 24 a few weeks ago (I didn't know _that_ could be done), and 
Edison pulled 9 big ones in two pulls for electric, all under the 
Huron River near my location.  None of them pulled a wire with the duct.  

But MichCon pulled a new (yellow) gas line together with a (yellow) wire 
outside it.

Now, it could be that the resulting fiber cable was "clad" in metal, or 
something.  But, the Edison folks hit the MCI duct anyway....  looked to 
me like they had to dig 30 feet or so down to it, as it was coming up 
from under the Huron River.

One of the reasons there were problems with MCI is that despite detailed 
routing plans (that I had the opportunity to see), the contractor was 
often 15 to 20 feet off the original marked path going under creeks and 
around hills, and didn't mark the "as builts" on the plans.

I don't know whether Ameritech et alia made the same kind of mistakes, 
as they wouldn't let me see the plans, and didn't file them with the city, 
except where they were in public right of way.  They claim their duct 
locations are "proprietary".   Plays havoc with city planning.

> B) Fiber duct is often punched through with a ram, not buried
> by cut & cover methods; it being far cheaper to ram. But b1)
> that means there is no way to leave "buried trouble below" tape
> and b2) the NEXT guy will likely be ramming as well so even if
> there was tape, no one would see it.
Yes, they used directional drilling even where I thought they could just 
do a cut and cover.  Apparently the cost has been driven lower than the 
traditional cleanup costs of cut and cover.

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