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Cute Animals, Not-Cute Criminals Wreck Connections

Masked raccoons and bandits take out your power

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[ Technology]

Last week was a weird one for Internet and power outages, with causes ranging from the ever-popular out of control truck, to random gunfire.

Cute Animals, Not-Cute Criminals Wreck Connections

Thieves and raccoons plagued people with their activities. The innocent victims? Wires, of the electrical and telecom variety.

A post at Royal Pingdom collected a busy week’s worth of outages induced by an assortment of means. Trucks figured in a couple of those, as one driver’s search for a dropped cellphone resulted in him taking out an electrical feeder line in a Montana town.

Another trucker plowed through a power line in Milestone, Saskatchewan, and yanked down four utility poles and a transformer. A power company spokesperson said in a report that fixing it was going to be expensive; pity the unfortunate driver.

While an adorable raccoon plowed into a Newport News transformer seeking warmth, which he likely found for a brief fraction of a second, the causes of losses of cable and telephone service in Memphis and in Hillsborough County, Florida, came about due to human intervention.

Comcast blamed random gunfire for the Memphis outage, while Verizon officials in Florida said copper thieves struck again when they pulled up 500 feet of cable.

These incidents should serve as a reminder to webmasters and site publishers that what can go wrong, may very well go wrong without notice. This would be a good time to review what a hosting provider promises in terms of uptime, backups, and SLA in the event of a disaster.

You could be a wayward bird away from an outage, and being on the hook for hours of unprovided service, so check wisely. If the terms of service don’t look right in the event of a disaster, clarifying them with the provider, or finding a new one, is a task best accomplished before an outage happens.

 

Cute Animals, Not-Cute Criminals Wreck Connections
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