Update on Network Build and Maintenance
At a time when the vast majority of us are required to stay at home except for very limited purposes, the availability and resilience of our broadband infrastructure is critical.
Government guidance (19th March ’20) lists “… telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 services)” as one of the critical sectors that allows staff to continue operating in the field.
We have been informed by suppliers in the region that work will continue on network maintenance and fault repairs, customer repairs, as well as, for now, network build.
To facilitate this, Highways Authorities have indicated that they will adopt a “common sense, pragmatic approach” that “holds as close to a ‘Business as usual’ position…” as possible.
Building Digital UK (BDUK) has advised that suppliers may continue to work on delivery projects if they are content to do so and have appropriate safeguards in place for their staff and members of the public. However, in the event that COVID-19 infections place further strain on suppliers’ employees and sub-contractors, their reduced resources will rightly be prioritised towards maintenance and repairs.
Whilst the current social distancing restrictions are in place, CDS expects that any work required to connect homes to new infrastructure which requires entry to premises to be undertaken observing all social-distancing advice by installers wearing appropriate PPE.
This is obviously an extremely fluid situation in which advice, legislation and business impacts can change daily. We will provide updated information here as circumstances evolve.
Updates from suppliers working in the CDS region below, including their current policies on installation procedures: