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Openreach COVID Update – Jan 2021

Further to our last communication, we are writing to confirm some status alterations due to the implementation of the third national lockdown. ———————————————————————————————————Engineering Appointments——————————————————————————————————— For all products, Openreach have now updated all areas so they sit under an Amber Status due to the latest government tiering. For Copper products, Engineers will only be entering premises […]

Further to our last communication, we are writing to confirm some status alterations due to the implementation of the third national lockdown.

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Engineering Appointments
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For all products, Openreach have now updated all areas so they sit under an Amber Status due to the latest government tiering.

For Copper products, Engineers will only be entering premises to provision orders working up to the NTE/ONT or where a customer has a Total Loss of Service requiring repair.

For Ethernet products, where essential businesses remain open (and customer’s can give safe access to the premises), engineers will provide service end-to-end, while following safe working practices to complete the work. If engineers can’t gain safe building access, or follow safe working practices, then external build to the curtilage will continue. Openreach are currently indicating that there is no MBORC or stop the clock delay at the moment, if this changes we will communicate further.

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G.Fast and FTTP Appointments
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One of the most significant changes impacts G.Fast and FTTP delivery. In summary the changes are:

1. Starting today, for new orders, the appointment books will be pushed out to 1 March and beyond. An escalation process is being worked on in the coming days for cases where a customer has no existing broadband service or is receiving a service of less than 30Mbps (to help support home working and schooling).
2. In the next few days inflight orders will reschedule to March and beyond for orders where a customer has an existing broadband service with Openreach above 30Mbps.
3. Un-appointed FTTP orders, such as Greenfield FTTP provisioning, will be unaffected.

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NTE Shifts for WLR
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Due to these restrictions, if a customer requires an NTE shift but their service is working, engineers will not be able to complete this under the current amber status. Any NTE shift requests will need to be placed on hold for at least 4 weeks, at which point the current lockdown restrictions will be reviewed by the Government.

If a customer has lost service and an engineer is required to install an NTE as part of a provision, this work will still go ahead to ensure customers have connectivity during this difficult time.

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A Reminder – COVID-19 Screening Questions
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In March we advised you on questions that should be checked before booking an engineering appointment. We recommend that the following questions should continue to be asked:

1. Has anyone in the premises been diagnosed with COVID-19?
2. Has anyone in the premises been asked to self-isolate, or travelled to a Coronavirus high-risk area or country in the last 14 days?
3. Has anyone in the premises been suffering from COVID-19 symptoms (such as loss of taste, a temperature, or a persistent cough)?

The engineer may also ask the above questions on arrival. Should the you confirm ‘yes’ to these questions, then the engineer will not enter the premises and the job will be reappointed for four weeks later.

If the answer to the above questions is ‘no’, the engineer will enter the premises to work up to the NTE/ONT only and they will be taking additional precautions (such as asking individuals to vacate to another room).

Thank you for your continued patience.

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