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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 April, 2004, 13:39 GMT 14:39 UK
Phone lines chaos 'almost over'
Engineers inside the damaged tunnel
It is thought an electrical fault caused the fire
Phone lines cut off by an underground tunnel fire in Manchester are expected to be restored before the weekend.

The blaze beneath the city centre in the early hours of Monday knocked out about 130,000 lines.

The fire, which caused disruption to homes and businesses across the North West, was probably caused by an electrical fault.

Manchester Chamber of Commerce has estimated businessses affected are losing about 4.5m a day in total.

Emergency services were also affected by the problems, with Greater Manchester Ambulance Service having to contact its emergency crews by mobile phone.

Andrew Jones, director of BT Broadband, says engineers are working flat out to restore the remaining 18,000 lines that are affected.

He said many customers may have intermittent services.

Mr Jones added: "Capacity is limited at the moment, customers may have to redial and keep trying."


SEE ALSO:
Half of fire-hit phones repaired
31 Mar 04  |  Manchester
Phones could take days to restore
30 Mar 04  |  Manchester
Fire cuts off 130,000 phone lines
29 Mar 04  |  Manchester


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