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Snow affects

The recent inclement weather that the Western Cape and Overberg region experienced transformed many areas into a winter wonderland with heavy snowfalls on mountain ranges. Snow seekers were delighted but for internet service providers it caused serious problems in certain areas.

Hermanus Times spoke to Johan van Biljon of Firewater Connect about the problems internet service providers experienced. “Galgeberg in the Greyton area had the heaviest snowfall in years causing four electric poles to break which in turn totally cut off our electricity supply up to the mountain.

This affected four internet service providers and our only solution was to take a generator, which had to be refuelled every day, up the mountain to provide internet service for our clients in Greyton, Caledon and as far as Robertson.”

Van Biljon said a second heavy snowstorm caused even more problems. “The generator started giving problems as it was simply not meant to work for such a length of time under such extreme conditions. At one stage we had three generators up there, as it was simply too difficult to bring the malfunctioning ones down under those conditions.

“As it took the concerned municipality responsible for fixing the electrical poles two weeks to do, we had to drive up the mountain every day to refuel the generator. Our clients rely on the internet for business and communication, so we really had no other option but to do this. We are, however, happy to report that the electrical poles have now been fixed and that the internet is up and running normally again.”

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