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Jeddah phones fall silent as meltdown disrupts service

STC's HQ had to move swiftly to restore services after a power failure fried several Jeddah telephone exchanges.

Jeddah's telephone system was brought to its knees on Friday when a power station failure caused a meltdown to several Saudi Telecommunications Company exchanges.

Over 15,000 mobile phones, 350,000 land lines and several banks' ATM cash machine networks were affected by the failure, according to local press reports.

STC said that the problem was due to failure happened when electrical power was cut-off at the exchanges, causing cables to melt.

Service to most phones was restored when four new electrical generators were installed and 2000 metres of cable were replaced although as much as 20% of the network was still affected over the weekend.

The telephone failure comes a week after Saudi Arabia dropped off the Internet when a critical router failed at KACST.

The two incidents are completely unrelated, according to industry sources.

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