Mudslide in Val Müstair.

Temporary solution for copper cable laid in a short time.

It happened at around 8:30 p.m. on Sunday, 22 August 2021. Close to the border with South Tyrol, in Val Müstair (Graubünden), a landslide occurred after heavy rainfall, which buried the cantonal road. Copper lines were damaged in the process; these served approximately 600 people in the region with fixed-network telephone, Internet and TV connections.

Author Martina Strazzer

As soon as cablex received the fault report, the on-call team mobilised all available forces in the sparsely populated region to record the damage and immediately begin repair work. Our measurement technicians and splicer team were on site at around 7:00 a.m. on 23 August 2021. However, the debris cone amounting to about 1,000 m³ could not be cleared until around noon, meaning that we were only able to assess the extent of the damage then.

Mudslide in Val Müstair.

Extent of the damage.

A bridge was completely damaged in the landslide. The copper cables that fed 40 mCANs between Santa Maria and Müstair were attached to the body of the bridge. The cables were so badly damaged that around 600 customers of Swisscom and other telecommunications providers lost their fixed-network telephone, Internet and TV connections. Fortunately, the four optical fibre cables were unharmed.

Given the extent of the damage, the managers in attendance from cablex immediately decided that a temporary solution was required to restore network supply as quickly as possible. The temporary re-routing of the cables was planned and outlined, and the necessary material was ordered immediately.

The temporary solution.

A 500-metre-long cable was ordered with express delivery. This arrived in Valchava on 24 August 2021 and was quickly sent on and prepared for installation thanks to fabulous teamwork. Overhead line fitters from the external company Netzbau Grigis as well as cablex cable pullers, measuring technicians and splicers were involved in implementing the solution. The cable was routed across the stream and various trees. Overhead poles were installed in front of the shaft, via which the cable could be pulled into the cable shaft. Subsequently, the elaborate splicing work began.

At noon on Wednesday, 25 August 2021, construction work on the temporary facility was completed and customers were back online. As soon as all the construction companies involved have completed the clean-up work in Graubünden, our cablex team will be back again to tackle the definitive new installation.

Thank you very much.

Once again, a network disruption in a remote region of Switzerland was quickly resolved thanks to perfectly coordinated teamwork. It's good to know that we can always rely on our cablex colleagues in the field.

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