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EE (Orange Mast) No Signal For Over A Month


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Old 25-07-2013, 12:36
rightonpard
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Our village, Blaenau Ffestiniog in rural North Wales, relies on a single 2G only mast (Site Ref GWY0030), LL41 area - an old Orange mast.

Other networks only have 2G here as well, there has never been any 3G here (you may get a one bar signal from the MBNL mast in the next village on a good day).

Anyway, long story short, our Orange 2G mast has been down for over a month now - it's no stranger to outages with it reguraly offline for anywhere between a few hours and a few days every couple of months.

Onviously having chased EE for weeks about it via every available method, phone, email, social networks, executive office - they are "aware of the fact its out of service but have no resolution time yet"..

Just seems ridiculous to me that its been down for so long and they have no idea when anything is going to be done about it.

I pass the mast on a daily basis and there is no obvious work happening, no new cabs, the antennas are not being replaced, its the same old cranky mast thats been there for 15 odd years.

About 70% of our village can get about 2 bars of 2G from the MBNL mast jn next village, and 1 bar of 3G. The other 30% of our village has gone from a five bar 2g signal (when this mast was workinng) to no service whatsoever.

The mast is a 30 metre microwave relay site, and covers a large area - would they have decomissioned it?! - The EE coverage map still shows the 2G footprint this mast did cover... Or do they just not care about getting it back online because of the relatievly low population here and thus its far from there priorities...

Any ideas? Anyone?

I consider myself to have a reasonable understanding, but I can't fathom what's happening in this case...
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Old 25-07-2013, 12:51
Stig
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Try Watchdog?

If enough people in the village get together and generate some negative publicity for Orange/EE maybe they will take notice.
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Old 25-07-2013, 14:40
thebennyboy
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I live near Llanrwst and regularly pass through and also find there is no service there at all. I am with Three but here 2g backup is definitely still in place in Blaenau as they have not got 3g coverage at all there. I also noticed the 2g coverage stop about 3 weeks ago.
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Old 25-07-2013, 15:17
The Lord Lucan
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Is there any work going on around it ie any buildings being demolished or redevelopment that would lead to the landlord requesting them to switch it off before it is taken down because they want the land?

I'm surprised that Exec office hasn't got back to you with a proper reason for the outage?!
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Old 25-07-2013, 16:21
rightonpard
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Is there any work going on around it ie any buildings being demolished or redevelopment that would lead to the landlord requesting them to switch it off before it is taken down because they want the land?

I'm surprised that Exec office hasn't got back to you with a proper reason for the outage?!
There's no work going on, demolishment or redevelopment - infact nothing happening nearby at all. It backs on to a rail track, and in front of it a road - seperated by a pavement. Whilst there is easy access for engineers, theres no room around the site for any sort of development - you couldn't fit anything other than a mobile mast on the bit of land it covers.

The exec office after talking to a chap there for about half an hour, couldn't give me any more information other than the process they follow when informed about an outage, and that they were aware of the problem, but had no access to information about whether or when engineers would be booked etc - Whilst he genuinely sounded like he wished he could help more and had more information, the details he were able to give wern't really any more exhaustive than; When we are informed of an outage we forward it to the network team, and they use that information to prioritise their workload - reading between the lines, the more people that complain, the sooner it'll get looked at - which seems fair from a business perspective as the sites that make them the most money will obviously be most important to them....

Still, well over a month, possibly as much as 6 weeks...

Can't suss it... I've ported out to Ovivo for the time being, as I stay on 30 day deals so I can jump ship luckily But I want to get back to EE as at least they have 3G covering most of North Wales which is where I spend most of my time - but having no signal at home whatsoever is a deal breaker.
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Old 25-07-2013, 17:41
paulker
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Is there any work going on around it ie any buildings being demolished or redevelopment that would lead to the landlord requesting them to switch it off before it is taken down because they want the land?

I'm surprised that Exec office hasn't got back to you with a proper reason for the outage?!
I complained to the executive office about the constant dropped calls. It took TWO MONTHS for them to send me a text to say sorry and they understand its been rectified. Terrible terrible service.
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Old 25-07-2013, 18:15
The Lord Lucan
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Still, well over a month, possibly as much as 6 weeks...
.
I try to find out about this for you.. sounds very strange.
Maybe one of the other guys that has direct access to the systems will get in touch as it might be some time before i hear back as i do not work for them..

Surprised money of, or at the least signal boxes were not offered. Normally Exec office is on the ball and have direct contact so they can find out very quickly whats up at a site.
I have heard they are taking longer to reply but that doesn't excuse the way you've been kept in the dark.

I do know they are working heavily on Wales to bring make a target they made sometime ago to happen, however surprisingly i have no info on that specific mast.
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Old 25-07-2013, 18:36
rightonpard
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Thanks Lord Lucan, any info you can find would be greatly received - it seems an odd sceneiro!

They wouldn't have offered me money off or a signal box as tbh I only use that mast indirectly via means of Three 2G backup and on a Vectone Mobile sim (EE MVNO) - so i'm not a direct customer of theirs. - They only give me the time of day when I call because I have an Orange PAYG sim purely so I can ring and nag them when that particular mast go's down, as regularly as it does! - and for Orange Wednesdays

I would happily go direct with either T-Mobile or Orange on a sim only plan (30 day or 12 month) if they would offer me a signal box.
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Old 25-07-2013, 22:39
plymouthbloke1974
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To be pedantic, there is no such thing as an MBNL 2G mast.......
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Old 26-07-2013, 00:40
rightonpard
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To be pedantic, there is no such thing as an MBNL 2G mast.......
The site I refer to as being an MBNL mast was originally a 2G only T-Mobile site, intergrated into the MBNL scheme, it's now knocking out T-Mobile & Three UMTS, and has retained it's 2G "transmission-ness!"<- (I've had a beer this evening, and i'm not feeling very verbose!)

So to sum up it's got the MBNL antennas, Three & T-Mobile 3G at 2100mhz, and T-Mobile antenna at 1800mhz for 2G...

To be pedantic, it's still the same mast though isn't it - just different antennas attached to the same structure.
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Old 26-07-2013, 11:00
exterra
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Orange / EE need to pull their finger out and get in place a proper process for managing sites that are down.

In my neck of the woods we've had sites offline since last November - there doesn't appear to be a plan for getting them back in service and compared to Three's very visible network monitoring / fault remediation the sense I get is that for non MBNL sites, EE just can't be bothered to manage its infrastructure or get in place a process to manage it - customers reporting faults are basically led on a wild goose chase until they give up.
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Old 26-07-2013, 12:26
japitts
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Our village, Blaenau Ffestiniog in rural North Wales, relies on a single 2G only mast (Site Ref GWY0030), LL41 area - an old Orange mast.

Other networks only have 2G here as well, there has never been any 3G here (you may get a one bar signal from the MBNL mast in the next village on a good day).

Anyway, long story short, our Orange 2G mast has been down for over a month now - it's no stranger to outages with it reguraly offline for anywhere between a few hours and a few days every couple of months.

Just seems ridiculous to me that its been down for so long and they have no idea when anything is going to be done about it.

I pass the mast on a daily basis and there is no obvious work happening, no new cabs, the antennas are not being replaced, its the same old cranky mast thats been there for 15 odd years.

Any ideas? Anyone?

I consider myself to have a reasonable understanding, but I can't fathom what's happening in this case...
Without commenting on the specifics, there are numerous scenarios where the fault-fix requires no onsite activity and could well be entirely remote to the site affected. So don't take lack of onsite activity as meaning nothing is necessarily being done.
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Old 26-07-2013, 14:43
exterra
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"So don't take lack of onsite activity as meaning nothing is necessarily being done."

The fact the mast has been offline for a month is a pretty good lag measure of nothing HAS been done. Network changes don't take 4 weeks, and even in the event that the mast is offline pending network upgrades there's still no reason for that to result in total loss of service other than if there's been a complete lack of planning.
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Old 26-07-2013, 17:07
The Lord Lucan
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It could be that the fault isn't even at this site if it is a relayed....

exterra: Sites that were switched off last November are likely to have been decommissioned and won't be back unless they need them back. Non MBNL? Three and EE's sites are ran by MBNL and the decommissioning was because of overlap between Three's and T-Mobile and then the overlaps created by adding in Orange masts to MBNL, where they are quite far through that process.
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Old 26-07-2013, 19:38
rightonpard
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Got a reply from EE this evening:


Sorry that you are having this problem still.

I have checked with the device escalations team who can check what the engineers are doing.

The engineers seem to be struggling to get the cause of the fault identified which is obviously causing a problem for your village. You will be pleased to know that because of the number of complaints received from the users in the area that the Press Office are now pushing to get a resolution.

This also means that they may issue a statement regarding the fault in the papers at some point.

Kind regards

Nick
In other words 'somebody' has contacted the local papers and now they feel they have to pull their finger out to avoid bad publicity
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Old 26-07-2013, 19:50
plymouthbloke1974
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To be pedantic, it's still the same mast though isn't it - just different antennas attached to the same structure.
I know - I was just in a mood to stir last night.... One of them days lol
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Old 26-07-2013, 19:57
exterra
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Lord Lucan - looks like it isn't a case a mast that's being decommissioned then - it's as I said, a lack of follow up and escalation by EE's network Ops. The fact that it takes an intervention from a press office just shows how pi55 poor EE's internal processes are.
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Old 26-07-2013, 20:05
enapace
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Lord Lucan - looks like it isn't a case a mast that's being decommissioned then - it's as I said, a lack of follow up and escalation by EE's network Ops. The fact that it takes an intervention from a press office just shows how pi55 poor EE's internal processes are.
Actually I think it's more to do with EE's focus all there focus is on 4G and EE customers. Which is neglecting there two legacy networks for instance Orange and T-mobile are having problems with Data connections but EE customers aren't even if they are using a 3G connection. They don't seem to care either.
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Old 26-07-2013, 23:00
lost boy
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Actually I think it's more to do with EE's focus all there focus is on 4G and EE customers. Which is neglecting there two legacy networks for instance Orange and T-mobile are having problems with Data connections but EE customers aren't even if they are using a 3G connection. They don't seem to care either.
I'd be inclined to say it's a bit of both - pi** poor internal processes at EE, and everything you said.

I'll be honest, I do feel mean saying that they simply just don't care unless it's about EE and/or 4G, but frankly it's true. When I first reported issues with the network coverage here to Orange (via my Three handset as neither the Orange or T-Mobile half of the EE network could hold a call long enough to connect...), they (eventually) admitted it was network optimisation, they agreed that there were now new large coverage holes in the area because of it, they diagnosed an additional problem specifically with the T-Mobile signal... and openly stated they weren't going to do a thing about any of it. I mean, how else is a person supposed to take a response like that?
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Old 26-07-2013, 23:22
DaveProudlock
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Some of the Orange masts round here have been faulty for the last 5 years, one mast can be on one day then off the next, another has voice and text but no data, the others have been dead for months even though they say they haven't been decomissioned, Orange say they are aware of all these faults but have idea when they'll be fixed. Absolute shambles of a network round here, I just can't understand why they won't send engineers out to these sites when they know there's a fault.
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Old 27-07-2013, 16:31
The Lord Lucan
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I'm glad to see more speedy action is being taken at that site.

As for neglecting the 3G network untrue, As part of MBNL that is just not the case.

As for EE's 2G, they have engineers upgrading that network so that it can be 3G/4G and part of MBNL.
Part of this project is called the 2G Refresh... I'd imagine because of this they are working through a list of sites with maximum aggressiveness tying up engineering staff. Hence why many rural area have seen such a massive increase in 3G coverage (this has not slowed)
I'd imagine places like this one in Wales are on that list and if in the mean time it goes tits up they are just waiting until it is time to upgrade and fix simply because of the staff needed.

So to say they are not doing anything is in fact very inaccurate. You can keep patching an old network and keep reliability relatively ok but coverage rolls out slowly (wonder who i am talking about...) or you can start ripping out old equipment, replacing it on a schedule and increasing coverage and speeds aggressively.. there will be choices made that don't look good on the way and there will be short term disruption but in the end it will be worth it.
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Old 27-07-2013, 16:32
The Lord Lucan
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Some of the Orange masts round here have been faulty for the last 5 years, one mast can be on one day then off the next, another has voice and text but no data, the others have been dead for months even though they say they haven't been decomissioned, Orange say they are aware of all these faults but have idea when they'll be fixed. Absolute shambles of a network round here, I just can't understand why they won't send engineers out to these sites when they know there's a fault.
3G or 2G? Switched off since Novemberish?
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Old 27-07-2013, 23:32
DaveProudlock
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All the faulty masts are Orange 2G ones most of which cover areas not covered by the T-mobile masts. One went off in Feb/March but only Orange and Vodafone are on that one.
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Old 02-08-2013, 12:46
rightonpard
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Still no signal... No sign of any works being done...
Absolutely ridiculous.
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Old 02-08-2013, 13:35
japaul
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Could be a line of sight issue if backhaul is microwave. If they've got nothing else to point the dish at then it's sometimes taken out of service as this is often preferable to an unreliable site. Then it can be a waiting game without any definite timescales. No work required at the site itself but could be permission is needed before trees can be trimmed, rare nesting birds found in said trees, waiting for man made obstacles to be removed...
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