Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Again: Is everyone okay?

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  • Craig Ranapia,

    BTW, anyone have some geekery on why the internet is still working but it's basically impossible to make cell or land line calls, even here in Dorkland?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 11867 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    BTW, anyone have some geekery on why the internet is still working but it’s basically impossible to make cell or land line calls, even here in Dorkland?

    Short, simple version, their commonality ends with the piece of copper that ends up in your house. Once it gets to the cabinet (or exchange) at the end of your street, the internet connection is split off and handled entirely separately from the phone connection.
    The internet just gets slow if it gets overloaded. The phone system, though, stops accepting new connections in. If the exchange telephone signalling has been damaged the ability to make calls is completely hosed, but if the copper is fine the signal for internet still works.

    The reason this is affecting the whole country is that telephone trunking is shared, and right now the whole country is focussed on Christchurch. The providers will be dynamically reallocating voice capacity around their networks (the wonders of voice circuits being digital) to assist with communications into Christchurch, and that reduces capacity for other centres.
    Plus, every man and his canine companion is trying to get hold of people in Christchurch, getting dropped, but tying up channels in the attempt. Or calling people they know who know people in Christchurch to find out if there’s any news.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3898 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    All mine okay down there. Phoned (on mobile) very very shaken friend - driving her mum to their house in Waimarie Bch. One daughter located, the other not.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    The Herald headlines its main, rolling article on the earthquake with the following:

    Did you feel the quake?

    Fucken hell.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7351 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    There are two major exchanges for Telecom’s voice network in New Zealand, in Glenfield and Papatoetoe. A lot of calling gets routed through these, particularly if other parts of the network fall over, and right now they’re regularly reaching capacity due to spiking national calling. Vodafone’s own network infrastructure is also Auckland-heavy, IIRC.

    Internet in New Zealand tends to be more decentralised and isn’t routed in the same way if there’s a problem with the network (though there’s always the possibility that bits and pieces will stop responding for a while.)

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 859 posts Report Reply

  • Sonia Braid,

    I agree with you, Craig. I went into a shop in Greenlane this afternoon to get some veggies and they said their eftpos terminal was down because of the earthquake. WTF?

    Glad to hear Emma, David and the extended PAS family are okay so far, and fingers crossed everybody else calls in/makes it home safely.

    Queen of the CBD • Since Nov 2006 • 9 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    BTW, anyone have some geekery on why the internet is still working but it’s basically impossible to make cell or land line calls

    Well, you can thank Hedy Lamarr

    The wireless north ;-) • Since Dec 2006 • 4671 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    I am not being flippant but please, soak it up folks. Blood as well. This IS the reality of earthquakes. The Sept 4th one was truly an "unusual" event with no deaths. There was no dodging the bullet in this one. We ALL need to understand that the reality of natural catastrophies, with people close by, is death and destruction. I would counsel all to consider how you you would cope when (not if) it happens to you. It is well worth the effort. Check out the Pyne Gould building 233 Cambridge Tce on Google Maps. It was as it is in the road photo at 12:30pm today. And compare to the Stuff photo of it.

    My family too is slowly being picked up via txt and messages. Imagine what it would be like even 10 years ago. It would take days to find that out. We are lucky to have such second to second communications.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1491 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    There are alot of call centres based in Chch too.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Stuff Headline;

    " Extensive Welfare Shakeup Needed: Report"

    KPI achieved I would say. And probably slipping fast off the radar for a few days, weeks, months.........

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1491 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Ross Mason,

    The Sept 4th one was truly an “unusual” event with no deaths

    The time of day really helped with that one. In countries with construction standards, quakes that happen during hours of darkness tend to be less-serious from a people safety perspective than ones that happen during daylight hours when people are at risk of stuff falling on them. Sadly, today's one was about the worst possible case, being a summer lunchtime with many buildings weakened from September and all the intervening shakes.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3898 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi, in reply to Jackie Clark,

    There are alot of call centres based in Chch too.

    Yeah, both Telecom and TelstraClear have evacuated their buildings, but there is routing in place to take calls to other centres. Reports are that the TelstraClear building in Hereford St (the one that survived the last quake) is pretty much wrecked.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 859 posts Report Reply

  • Lara,

    Am fine. Sick of this.

    Christchurch • Since Jul 2009 • 74 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    Oh Lara.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3123 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    Sadly, today’s one was about the worst possible case, being a summer lunchtime with many buildings weakened from September and all the intervening shakes.

    Two things make this not the absolute "worst case": it wasn't rush hour, and it didn't trigger a tsunami.

    Small blessings.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    Telecom has decreased data capacity and increased voice capacity over the XT network, and "SMS quick retry" has been disabled for 027-if a SMS has not been received the first time a retry will not occur.

    They're also considering locking down the XT network for 111 calls only, but only if the situation absolutely requires it, which it doesn't at the moment. 111 calling is now stable.

    (This is all directly from Telecom Wholesale's Service Delivery team.)

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 859 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole, in reply to Lucy Stewart,

    it wasn’t rush hour, and it didn’t trigger a tsunami.

    Actually, rush hour would've been better in some ways. Fewer people inside buildings. At rush hour, the PGC building would've been mostly empty, for example. It's a very mixed blessing.
    As for a tsunami, being the epicentre means the wave radiates outward. Christchurch would've been safe.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3898 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    One of the more assiduous citizen journalists in Twitter says she's hearing that Lyttelton and Brighton are going to be hard places to live. Still haven't heard from my friend in Brighton.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 18711 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Does anyone actually know if international calls will affect the congestion?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8316 posts Report Reply

  • Whoops,

    Unconfirmed commentary on HuffPo that tourist were up in the Cathedral Tower.

    Fuck.

    here • Since Apr 2007 • 103 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    As for a tsunami, being the epicentre means the wave radiates outward. Christchurch would’ve been safe.

    A stronger earthquake located just offshore could have caused similarly bad damage and a totally inescapable (because it would arrive so quickly) tsunami. But true, nothing onshore would have that effect.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi, in reply to Whoops,

    Unconfirmed commentary on HuffPo that tourist were up in the Cathedral Tower.

    Stuff had a quote from the Dean of the Cathedral earlier:

    4.01 pm: The Dean of the Cathedral, Peter Beck, says he had no idea how many people were inside the church.

    He says they tried to get out as many people as they could but it was now in the hands of emergency services. "It doesn't look good".

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 859 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Nimmo, in reply to giovanni tiso,

    How are the hostels, do you happen to know?

    I don't know about the hostels per se, I've heard from/about students in the general area whose flat have been undamaged. Hoping!

    Wellington • Since May 2009 • 97 posts Report Reply

  • Christopher Nimmo,

    Not sure if this has been posted on this thread so far, but could be of some use.

    Wellington • Since May 2009 • 97 posts Report Reply

  • Ross Mason,

    Auntie in Brighton OK. Her chimney finally crashed down this morning, Tough old biddy.

    Upper Hutt • Since Jun 2007 • 1491 posts Report Reply

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