Many Australians, including this writer, began noticing service failures and outages after 1pm today.
AussieOutages reported well over 5000 reported Telstra complaints from 1pm.
Telstra tweeted at 1:40pm that one of its exchanges was quite literally on fire, and this was the cause of the disruption. This was later identified as the Chatswood exchange.
A fire at one of our exchanges is impacting some mobile and fixed services. We're working to resolve ASAP. Thanks for your patience.— Telstra (@Telstra) 2 February 2017
Further information will be provided as it comes in and iTWire will be seeking to understand how this fire affected regions so far away, and what backup mechanisms Telstra had in place and why these may not have worked as expected.
Telstra has Tweeted at 2:32pm that technicians are on-site at Chatswood inspecting the damage.
Our techs are on-site at our Chatswood Exchange in Sydney completing a full assessment. We'll provide more info as soon as it's available.— Telstra (@Telstra) 2 February 2017
At 2:58pm Telstra advises power has been restored to Chatswood. Technicians are monitoring the devices for stability and will restore mobile traffic once confirmed.
This incident is not entirely isolated; Telstra experienced an electrical fire at the Brunswick exchange in June 2016 making this the second such telephone exchange fire in less than 12 months.