GLOBE Telecom, Inc. is working to typhoon its fiber network by switching to an underground cable system, a company official said Tuesday.
“One of the interesting things we are doing now is seeing how we can typhoon our networks and move our cables underground,” Don Rae, senior adviser to Globe’s corporate group, said during a briefing.
Telecommunications companies’ services are constantly disrupted when a powerful typhoon hits the country. Last December, several areas of Mindanao and Visaya lost telecommunications lines due to Typhoon Odette.
Various groups have called on the government to consider underground cables as part of its disaster resilience strategy to prevent massive power outages during disasters such as Typhoon Odette.
Utilities service providers have said they are willing to switch to an underground cable system, but this would require government subsidies and proper planning on the part of government officials.
Department of Public Works and Highways-National Capital Region (DPWH-NCR) Regional Director Nomer Abel P. Canlas told BusinessWorld in February that there was a proposal to bury overhead lines in Metro Manila.
In March, Mr. Canlas that his office requested about P200 million for the project in the 2023 National Expenditure Program.
The funding will support both the feasibility study and the infrastructure that will house the buried cables.
DPWH also hopes to “subsidize transmission costs” for distribution companies using overhead cables such as Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) and telecommunications companies. Waterworks can also receive support to relocate their above-ground transmission assets.
Mr. Canlas noted that the project could be revenue-positive for the government by getting utilities to pay to use the infrastructure to house the buried lines.
The feasibility studies were planned to be carried out along the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) and the Katipunan Avenue Extension. Mr. Canlas said DPWH also wants to include Radial Road 10 or R10.
Among the benefits for utilities is that they can skip the step of acquiring the obligation to give way to their positions, Sir. said Canlas.
Mr. Rae also said the Globe group is building “comprehensive facilities” for cyber security, which is becoming increasingly important as more people work from home. – Arjay L. Balinbin