User comments on ISPs
  >> BT Broadband


Register (or login) on our website and you will not see this ad.


Pages in this thread: 1 | 2 | 3 | (show all)   Print Thread
Standard User corsa57
(regular) Thu 17-Nov-16 22:51:28
Print Post

Maintenance of copper cable


[link to this post]
 
Have I been given the correct information by Openreach? I contacted them to say a tree in a nearby field had a branch touching the telephone line to my property. It was made very clear that Openreach does not sort out issues like this and the landowner would have to get the tree branch cut. I explained it was a very elderly lady who quite frankly is unable to look after herself let alone deal with this. The only suggestion was that once it damaged the cable they would replace it and then bill the landowner for the repair. Obviously I could not let that happen and so have bought equipment to do the necessary myself and avoid upsetting the lady.
I am left wondering why I pay a line rental every month if it does not cover maintenance of the line, surely this can't be right.

Edited by corsa57 (Thu 17-Nov-16 22:53:08)

Standard User MCM
(knowledge is power) Thu 17-Nov-16 23:34:42
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
Look at it as if the tree was on your land rather than your neighbours. Who do you think should pay to trim the branch? Your land, your tree = your responsibility.
Standard User Zarjaz
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Thu 17-Nov-16 23:36:11
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
It surely is right.

You pay line rental for Openreach to maintain your line.

I pay a garage to maintain my car, if branch comes off a tree and damages my car was it the garages responsibility to ensure no branch came near my car ?

Who should pay for the repair of the car if it did get damaged ? Not the garage for sure, though they would clearly seek recompense from me or the trees owner.


Register (or login) on our website and you will not see this ad.

Standard User corsa57
(regular) Fri 18-Nov-16 08:11:08
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Zarjaz] [link to this post]
 
Thank you Zarjaz and MCM for your replies. I suspect neither of you stay in remote locations. Here just finding out who owns land can be a challenge and as telephone cables are usually not put through the middle of crofts but along the borders it can be difficult to know who owns the tree which no one has planted it just grew naturally there right on the border line between crofts. So as you can see not a simple a matter, electricity lines are just as vulnerable to this problem and they deal with it immediately and so I expect Openreach to do the same. I don't expect the service for nothing I pay for it in my line rental.

Edited by corsa57 (Fri 18-Nov-16 08:11:48)

Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 18-Nov-16 08:29:08
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Zarjaz] [link to this post]
 
I would argue that BT own the line. If I own a car that gets damaged by a branch and can't get someone else to pay for the repair then I would have to pay for it myself. Same goes with BT - they can try and get someone to pay but in the end it could involve courts. If a branch was hanging over my car and in danger of damaging it (even just by normal movement) then I would look to remedy that before the damage happened.

We are not just paying OpenReach to maintain the line - the line is owned by OpenReach and their property.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 18-Nov-16 09:30:40
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
Ten or twenty years ago my line was simply done in by the willow tree in my garden it goes through. It was replaced free of charge by BT, with no suggestion of a charge. But I think times have changed.

Though quite how the policy could be changed apparently on a whim by a business seeking to reduce costs is an interesting legal question.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 57825/13835kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User eckiedoo
(fountain of knowledge) Fri 18-Nov-16 09:35:50
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
Is the old lady registered with BT as being "at risk" or similar?

Also does such registration also apply to my basically BT line; but with the Line Rental paid to EE as part of the Broadband Package?
Standard User Icaras
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 10:45:18
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by corsa57:
Thank you Zarjaz and MCM for your replies. I suspect neither of you stay in remote locations. Here just finding out who owns land can be a challenge and as telephone cables are usually not put through the middle of crofts but along the borders it can be difficult to know who owns the tree which no one has planted it just grew naturally there right on the border line between crofts. So as you can see not a simple a matter, electricity lines are just as vulnerable to this problem and they deal with it immediately and so I expect Openreach to do the same. I don't expect the service for nothing I pay for it in my line rental.


It's not about whether Zarjaz lives somewhere remote or not. He's just telling you what the policy is, and he's absolutely correct.

In reply to a post by RobertoS:
Ten or twenty years ago my line was simply done in by the willow tree in my garden it goes through. It was replaced free of charge by BT, with no suggestion of a charge. But I think times have changed.

Though quite how the policy could be changed apparently on a whim by a business seeking to reduce costs is an interesting legal question.


As I understand it all of this type of stuff was agreed with Ofcom and the providers when Openreach was formed in 2005.

Edited by Icaras (Fri 18-Nov-16 10:48:06)

Standard User Icaras
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 10:48:12
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by corsa57:
Thank you Zarjaz and MCM for your replies. I suspect neither of you stay in remote locations. Here just finding out who owns land can be a challenge and as telephone cables are usually not put through the middle of crofts but along the borders it can be difficult to know who owns the tree which no one has planted it just grew naturally there right on the border line between crofts. So as you can see not a simple a matter, electricity lines are just as vulnerable to this problem and they deal with it immediately and so I expect Openreach to do the same. I don't expect the service for nothing I pay for it in my line rental.


It's not about whether Zarjaz lives somewhere remote or not. He's just telling you what the policy is, and he's absolutely correct.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 18-Nov-16 10:58:28
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Icaras] [link to this post]
 
That makes sense. Unfortunately.

(In doing the edit you seem to have duplicated the original post smile).

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 57825/13835kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User TheEulerID
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 12:36:45
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
In the past it was would simply be easier to swallow the cost as the phone business was all a lot more profitable. Now that Ofcom seek to minimise the line rental costs it inevitably means that things that were previously absorbed will be separately charged. As an example, prior to LLU charges made to customers for faults in customer equipment were virtually unknown, now, of course they will tend to get passed onto SPs.

However, it would be interesting to know if the legal conditions are written down somewhere. Where lines cross a customer's premises is one thing, but if your line crosses the "airspace" of somebody else's property and is, in effect, a "free" wayleave, legal responsibility might be a bit difficult to prove. Rather different to where there are poles and lines across a farmer's field who is paid rental.
Standard User Zarjaz
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 18-Nov-16 12:40:34
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
But Openreach don't own the tree that causes damage.

Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 18-Nov-16 12:55:43
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: TheEulerID] [link to this post]
 
Ofcom seeking to minimise line rental? Come off it smile.

Openreach line rental maybe. But what use is that when the big CPs are now charging over double that? Made worse by now forcing the hiding of it by insisting on the bundle price on broadband. (Maybe it's the ASA but the effect is the same).

Ofcom or ASA needed to force full size display of line rental. Not hiding it. The CP could then display the total if they wished.

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 57825/13835kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 18-Nov-16 12:57:25
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Zarjaz] [link to this post]
 
That isn't relevant in my response to your comparison to damage to a car. You were mixing the maintainer and the owner in the example - in the case of openreach they both maintain and own. They either get the owner of the tree to deal with it or if the tree damages the line then have to chase the owner of the tree for recompense after the damage is done. The former may be cheaper but could cost a lot of staff time in making it happen.

Either way your comparison to a garage and car was not a good fit for the situation.
Standard User Fido
(committed) Fri 18-Nov-16 13:21:00
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RobertoS:
Ten or twenty years ago my line was simply done in by the willow tree in my garden it goes through. It was replaced free of charge by BT, with no suggestion of a charge. But I think times have changed.

Though quite how the policy could be changed apparently on a whim by a business seeking to reduce costs is an interesting legal question.


It seems that a lot of the problems in telecom regarding the inferior lines that most of us in the UK suffer from where created by the inept way in which BT was privatised in that it took with it the national phone line cabling system for the UK, (ie. the uncontrollable monster that is Openreach) and that is where all of these line quality/line maintenance issue come from.

These days, when you change your ISP you may need to install new cabling and/or you are still cursed by Openreach who have no incentive to improve or to change but when you change electricity or gas supplier you use the same, (more than adequate and keeping pace with modern standard), gas and electric supply pipes/cables maintained, (to the home), by the National Grid. - (Ideally we should have a National Grid for all Broadband/Phone cables in the UK).

In my view Openreach should be responsible for the phone line up to the Master Socket that they fit in a persons home in the same way that the National Grid is responsible for the Electric Cables and the Gas Pipes up to their connection to a persons home.

The problem is that Openreach are a law unto themselves and no one controls them.

Regards,
Fido

Sky Fibre

Edited by Fido (Fri 18-Nov-16 13:30:12)

Standard User 961a
(member) Fri 18-Nov-16 13:34:51
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: MCM] [link to this post]
 
Sorry folks, I find this hilarious

Living for many years in a remote hamlet at the end of a 5km line (just so you know where I'm coming from) it used to be the case that once a year the phone company and the electricity company would go round their wires once a year in the summer and trim any branches that looked likely to cause problems in the windy winter. Except where a farmer would not allow access because of growing crops

As times have moved on, although the power company still does this, Openreach has adopted a policy of ignoring trees causing damage until the damage results in a failure of the voice phone or the broadband, when it will go and do the minimum necessary to restore the service

I should add that in the vast majority of cases where this sort of problem occurs the trees belong to the local council and are growing on the verge of the road alongside the telephone cable. The council used to have a similar policy of annual tree lopping but, guess what, they no longer have funds for this either.

We have moved from a sensible annual maintenance programme to a "repair following failure" We have money for nothing

As for the particular case highlighted I would say you should leave well alone. If you attempt to rectify things yourself and something goes wrong you'll be blamed by all and sundry on the "not me, guv" basis. No one is going to go after the tree's owner on land where a wire crosses (unless there is a paid for wayleave which imposes a duty on the owner of the land to trim the trees) Show me a wayleave with that condition
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Fri 18-Nov-16 13:35:11
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Fido] [link to this post]
 
The problem is phone lines were installed to do the phone. And for the most part the lines still do that very well.

What we have now is those lines being pressed in to service to do things that were never envisaged when they were put in.

The same does not happen to gas/electric/water. The "stuff" that those utilities carry now is pretty much identical to what it was when they were first installed. There isn't a new "type" of electricity that they need to deliver. We aren't trying to push down water at 100 times the pressure.

What has been done with the copper phone lines is nothing short of remarkable. The advances in physics, electronics, etc to make this possible have been incredible. None of the other industries have had to deal with that sort of fundamental change in capabilities.

To do what really needs to be done would involve replacing the whole network. If the national grid had to replace every single cable going to every single home in order to provide for demand then they almost certainly would not be able to finance it. And yet that is what people think Openreach should be doing.

Openreach still does what it was doing before it was privatised. And it is doing a hell of a lot more. Comparing to other utilities is I believe not a fair comparison.

Of course they could do better. But that requires money. If they are making excessive profits then there is an argument that those profits should be put back in to the network. If their profits are reasonable then money to do new things has to come from somewhere.
Standard User TheEulerID
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 16:45:16
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
What ISP charge for line rental is an irrelevance as it has absolutely nothing to do with the money OR has for maintenance. It was also clearly the OR rental cost I was referring to in context. That is what guides policy

As for the idea that line rental actually means anything at all at the retail level, that's all smoke and mirrors. The way that SPs balance their pricing breakdown is purely arbitrary. Wholesale line rental is just a cost input for a package. Line rental means precisely nothing as a separate item when it's a non-optional part of a package.

If you insist on this arbitrary idea of a headlined line rental charge

As for keeping costs down, the principle that Ofcom follow is that it's competition that minimises prices overall and that they (and the ASA) think an enabler for that is for price comparisons to be simple. As most people buy packages, then that's what matters. Not some arbitrary list of ingredients when they all have to be bought together. I realise, of course, there are some customers who buy line rental from one company and broadband from another, but those are a minority of the market.

If you want to blame something, then blame Ofcom allowing packages at all. If the items could be mixed-and-matched freely, then maybe. Then (possibly) prices for each item might reflect the cost inputs. However, the costs of doing it that way will climb for everybody (not to mention the confusion over who to call if one element of the service goes down).

So, no, line rental price for packages is essentially meaningless.It might as well not exist.
Standard User Michael_Chare
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 17:45:06
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: corsa57] [link to this post]
 
Just wait for the line to fail. Openreach will then repair it. Whether they recover the cost from the landowner is their problem. I get annoyed by electricity supply companies not keeping trees away from power lines, as much as I think they should. Power cuts caused by falling trees are an all to common occurrence.

It was quite common for tree branches to rub against the phone cable that fed my and other houses. (Before my property)

Michael Chare
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Fri 18-Nov-16 18:23:30
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: TheEulerID] [link to this post]
 
Well I happily pay £14 line rental with peanuts call charges, no setup costs of 11p or more plus lots per minute, lis 1p or less per minute billed by the second. Then choose a broadband to fit. So Plusnet would cost me £2.50 more for my broadband, (maybe £3 now?) and I save a fortune on rental plus calls.

More fool people who don't work it out!

Kindness isn't going to cure the world of all its awfulness but it's a good place to begin. Daisy Ridley.
My broadband basic info/help site - www.robertos.me.uk. Domains, site and mail hosting - Tsohost.
Connection - AAISP Home::1 80/20. Sync 57825/13835kbps @ 600m. - BQM
Standard User Michael_Chare
(experienced) Fri 18-Nov-16 19:08:44
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: Zarjaz] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by Zarjaz:
It surely is right.

You pay line rental for Openreach to maintain your line.

I pay a garage to maintain my car, if branch comes off a tree and damages my car was it the garages responsibility to ensure no branch came near my car ?
If the car was in the possession of the garage at the time, then you could possibly argue that they had to taken good care of it, unless there were wholly exceptional weather conditions such as the '87 storm.

Michael Chare
Standard User eckiedoo
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 19-Nov-16 07:23:05
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: 961a] [link to this post]
 
But doesn't a typical Wayleave allow originally PO Telephones, now BT OR, to access the land to maintain the line/s?

My uncertainty is that the only time that I saw an actual Wayleave, was about 1949; and was for running lines along several buildings in town.
Standard User TheEulerID
(experienced) Sat 19-Nov-16 09:45:33
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
As you say, most people can't be bothered to debundle. But the new rules are for the lazy or, maybe, simply because they don't think £30 over a year is worth the hassle.
Standard User Michael_Chare
(experienced) Sat 19-Nov-16 10:06:41
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by RobertoS:
Well I happily pay £14 line rental with peanuts call charges, no setup costs of 11p or more plus lots per minute, lis 1p or less per minute billed by the second. Then choose a broadband to fit. So Plusnet would cost me £2.50 more for my broadband, (maybe £3 now?) and I save a fortune on rental plus calls.

More fool people who don't work it out!

What about those who don't have the same options as you do?

Michael Chare
Standard User David_W
(knowledge is power) Sat 19-Nov-16 18:19:58
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: eckiedoo] [link to this post]
 
In reply to a post by eckiedoo:
But doesn't a typical Wayleave allow originally PO Telephones, now BT OR, to access the land to maintain the line/s?
Yes.

I don't have the original Wayleave Consent to hand, but here is an extract from a Land Registry title certificate:
A Wayleave Consent dated 8 July 1980 affecting the land in this title and other land in favour of the Post Office relates to the laying of telegraph lines and ancillary equipment on the land on the eastern side of [street name] which includes land adjacent to the south western boundary of the land in this title. The said Consent contains the following restrictive condition:-
"The Grantor shall not use any part of the Grantor's land in such a way as to make the Post Office telegraphic line difficult of access provided that a Grantor shall not be liable for any breach of this Condition after he has ceased to have any interest in the Grantor's land."

Wayleaves will typically provide for access for maintenance and similar routine activities. However, the existence of the grantee's right to maintain does not necessarily put the entire burden of preventative maintenance on the grantee.

It's expensive to go round trimming trees proactively. With electricity cables, there is a safety of life concern if the lines are touched or, worse still, brought down - even if the circuit breakers open, there might still be hazardous voltages on the cables until they are properly earthed. This provides some justification for routine tree trimming activities by the electricity companies. Conversely, a broken telephone cable is little more than a nuisance assuming that the cable falls safely away from any thoroughfare, so it is arguably open to Openreach to adopt a reactive strategy in respect of tree damage to overhead line plant.

Whether the landowner is responsible for paying for damage to overhead cables is likely to depend on any relevant conditions in the wayleave (if any), then on the law of negligence.



ZeN Unlimited Fibre 2 with native IPv6
thinkbroadband speed test : speedtest.net : thinkbroadband quality monitor IPv4 IPv6
Standard User eckiedoo
(fountain of knowledge) Sat 19-Nov-16 18:38:16
Print Post

Re: Maintenance of copper cable


[re: David_W] [link to this post]
 
Thanks for the quick response.
Pages in this thread: 1 | 2 | 3 | (show all)   Print Thread

Jump to