SingTel fire caused by errant employee

SingTel fire caused by errant employee

SINGAPORE - The fire at SingTel's Bukit Panjang Exchange facility on October 9 has been found to have been caused by an employee who "did not follow strict maintenance procedures", according to a statement released by the telco on Wednesday.

The fire affected tens of thousands of broadband and cable TV users, including StarHub and M1 customers.

In its statement, SingTel said the incident occurred "during maintenance work at one of the lead-in pipes located in the cable chamber".

The fire was caused by an employee "not following strict maintenance procedures, including the use of an unauthorised blowtorch".

It added that an independent review by the SingTel Board Committee of Inquiry (BCOI) is on-going.

Here is the full statement from SingTel:

SingTel has completed its preliminary investigation into the cause of fire at the Bukit Panjang Exchange on 9 October 2013.

The incident occurred during maintenance work at one of the lead-in pipes located in the cable chamber. Our investigations showed that the fire was caused by an employee not following strict maintenance procedures, including the use of an unauthorised blowtorch.

The fire was localised at the affected lead-in pipe, one of three separate pipes that houses cables connecting to customer homes and business premises.

SingTel immediately activated contingency and diversification plans. By successfully re-routing traffic through other exchanges, services for the majority of customers served by the Bukit Panjang Exchange continued uninterrupted.

SingTel treats this incident very seriously and has always ensured that its contingency plans and safety measures meet global benchmarks. It has since strengthened existing processes and measures to prevent a recurrence of similar incidents.

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