music in the park san jose

Sabotage on the order of last week’s severing of fiber optic
cables which collapsed land phone lines, cell phone service and
internet access in South County is a great wake-up call. One that,
when the smoke cleared, didn’t cause nearly as much damage as it
could have.
Sabotage on the order of last week’s severing of fiber optic cables which collapsed land phone lines, cell phone service and internet access in South County is a great wake-up call. One that, when the smoke cleared, didn’t cause nearly as much damage as it could have.

Our telecommunications network needs to be protected in the same fashion as our water service and our power lines are. There has to be a way to literally work around a break in the cable system so that a “simple” repair doesn’t take 16 hours or more. That’s job one.

Beyond that is a potential house of horrors.

It’s clear, as AT&T spokesman John Britton so acerbically pointed out, “Wires stretch across America and you can’t put a cop on every cable.” It’s more clear that measures should be taken to make it a little more difficult than dropping down a manhole with a pair of garden shears and snipping a plastic-encased line.

Making the lines more secure is job two.

Hopefully, that won’t take legislation to accomplish. Our telecommunications companies surely recognize the importance. When 9-1-1 calls can’t be made for 16 hours and banks have to shut the doors, the obvious should be abundantly clear to AT&T. Fiber optic cables matter. They matter to the economy and they matter to people in distress.

The security questions grow upon further scrutiny. Hopefully, as some suggest, this is merely an anger-inspired union act of vandalism related to contract negotiations. That doesn’t make it any less egregious, but it’s a better scenario for learning a lesson than, say, if this were a terrorist dry run. These days it’s hard to simply dismiss that possibility.

We’re grateful that city workers responded in a professional manner, putting into operation the emergency plan. Certainly that’s given Police Chief Denise Turner a first-hand look at operations that will no doubt lead to refinements.

Now that we’ve been “fooled” once – this was so darn easy – hopefully there will be actions to go with this new awareness that will deter and, at the very least, shorten the duration of another such incident.

This editorial first appeared in the Gilroy Dispatch last week.

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A staff member wrote, edited or posted this article, which may include information provided by one or more third parties.

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