A look at the damage suffered by CenturyLink’s infrastructure

Reporter: Zach Oliveri
Published: Updated:
CenturyLink gave WINK News a tour of some their Ian damage. (CREDIT: WINK News)

Extensive damage to CenturyLink’s remote terminals is leaving customers offline for weeks after Hurricane Ian. The destruction makes it challenging to get back online.

There is rust and corrosion, as well as dried mud on wires.

So much is damaged that the internet provider is bringing in 17,000 miles of cable.

People have reached out to WINK News asking to see the damage because it’s one thing to hear about it, but it’s another thing to see it.

“The amount of corrosion rust, you know, just water and electronics don’t mix,” said Martin Valence, Lumen vice president of Network Operations. “It’s a completely destroyed cabinet.”

“I can fix all the lines I want. But if this terminal, these remote terminals, are damaged because of water intrusion surge or wind damage to the box that you know a gap of rain or water could get in and the electronics are fried, I still can’t deliver service,” Valence added.

That means everything needs to be pulled out and cleaned while new equipment is installed.

And not just for this box but also for many others like it across Southwest Florida.

CenturyLink gave WINK News a tour of some their Ian damage. (CREDIT: WINK News)

“The network was impacted significantly,” Valence said. “From lines to electronics to home, all that constitutes an ecosystem that delivers services to the customer. All three phases have to be addressed and repaired.”

One of the hardest hit areas for CenturyLink is in Cape Coral.

Helen Crimm is one of the customers still without internet.

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