SMPR-1 cable repair scheduled for completion today

POSTED: 09/29/11 2:07 PM

St. Maarten – Engineers repairing TelEm Group’s damaged SMPR-1 undersea cable will give the green light today for the company to restore broadband connections and send traffic between St. Maarten and Puerto Rico. The engineers have been carrying out repairs since Monday after locating and bringing the two damaged ends to the surface. The two were uniquely identified as the St. Maarten end and the Puerto Rico end. Both ends were trimmed, treated and then spliced together with an extra length of replacement cable before being returned to the sea bed Wednesday.

TelEm Group Engineer, Jed Carty, who monitored the repair operation on board the repair vessel Pacific Guardian, said the work has been carried out without any major incident or problems arising.

“The team very professional and have been keeping to the expected schedules laid out for the completion of work even finishing some parts way ahead of schedule. Steps have also been taken to bury the cable deeper than it was previously to guard against similar damage in the future,” Carty said.

TelEm Group’s Chief Technical Officer, (CTO) Eldert Louisa said the repair operation will not be completed until all international and data services have been taken off a temporary overland cable connection and restored to the SMPR-1 cable.

“We are informing our customers that we will be carrying out the reconnection to the restored SMPR-1 Cable from midnight Thursday until 4:00 am Friday morning. International and internet services will not be available to the general public on St. Maarten during this time,” Louisa said.

“We want everyone to take note of the maintenance window that has been announced and to make provisions accordingly,” he added as thanked the Pacific Guardian and its crew for completing the cable repair very quickly.

“This is a very good indicator for the future because we can now rely on their quick response if we ever get into this kind of difficulty again,” continued the CTO.

Louisa also congratulated the TelEm Group team who have been working along with the Pacific Guardian crew, for providing valuable assistance and local knowledge about the undersea cable and its operation.

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