East Africa internet access slows to a crawl after anchor snags cable

28 February 2012

The Guardian - 28 February 2012

The old theory that a butterly flapping its wings can cause a hurricane on the other side of the world may be somewhat far-fetched. But that a ship dropping anchor can disrupt the lives of millions has become painfully evident.

That is what happened off the Kenyan coast when, by unlucky chance, an anchor scored a direct hit on an underwater fibre-optic cable.

The knock-on effect is a predicted 20% slowdown in internet speeds in Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Ethiopia and South Sudan, the BBC reported.

The offending ship was waiting to enter the port of Mombasa at the weekend when it halted in a restricted area.

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