THE CONNECTION BETWEEN LOAD SHEDDING AND DATA LOSSES
If you’ve been following the news or watching social feeds, you’ll be aware of the complaints about the loss of connectivity and data disappearing when load shedding hits. There is a knock-on effect that lingers for a period following load shedding that directly affects our connectivity and data feeds.
WHAT’S GOING ON BEHIND THE SCENES?
Load shedding often leads to substations and transformers tripping, resulting in the need for power to be restored by Eskom or for municipal manpower to bring them back online. These problems are compounded by electrical surges that occur when the power returns which sometimes affects equipment at base stations which then need to be repaired or replaced.
What this all translates to is extended delays in power supply.
HOW CRIME CONTRIBUTES TO EXTENDED TOWER OUTAGES
Telecommunications companies have reported vandalism to network hi-sites doubling to around 30% during loadshedding and a steep increase in theft of batteries at these sites. Load shedding exacerbates the problem because battery lifespans are depleted when they are not given enough time to recharge which all means that battery back-up becomes shorter and shorter.
Back-up generators are primarily assigned to base stations where there is a high volume of traffic but unfortunately not all areas that are affected by load shedding benefit from generator back-up.
ARE ANY NETWORKS EXEMPT FROM COMMS OUTAGES?
All cell phone networks are directly affected by data losses and loss of connectivity caused by load shedding. The problems faced by one network are shared by all of them.
WHAT CAN YOU DO TO LESSEN THE EFFECT?
Check the load shedding schedules and plan ahead
Check your voice, SMS and data levels and expiration dates with your network supplier
Make sure that your electronic devices that don’t rely on a power source are always fully charged (e.g., laptops, cell phones and tablets)
Invest in a power bank and ensure that it is fully charged so that you have a back-up for your devices during outages.
For assistance to protect you against the effects of load shedding, contact our Electronic Security and Armed Response teams for inverters and lithium-ion batteries.