Fibre line issue causing some service outages in NWT

Last modified: June 12, 2020 at 11:35am

An apparent cut in the fibre line south of Enterprise caused problems with some telecoms services in the Northwest Territories on Friday morning.

The territorial government said there was an “ongoing telecommunications outage” along the length of the Mackenzie Valley Fibre Line, connecting communities from Fort Simpson to Inuvik.

RCMP said an “alleged fibre-optic line cut” was causing a “communication outage affecting wireless telephony services across the NWT.”


Internet services in some locations, like Yellowknife, appeared to be unaffected.

However, the territorial government’s 9-1-1 service was interrupted for Telus, SSI, and Iris cellular customers, the GNWT said.

RCMP said: “Until the repairs are complete, calls to the local detachment may not go through, or calls may not be automatically forwarded.

“If the public require police assistance, we ask they attend the detachment during regular working hours. In most detachments this is 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.”

The NWT government said it expects services to be restored by Friday evening.


“Technicians have identified the issue and are working to restore all services as quickly as possible,” said a Northwestel spokesperson.

Northwestel said “most northern telecommunications services” were being provided through a backup means, but some services were disrupted.

All services in High Level, Alberta, are impacted, the company said.

“Northwestel customers in some other regions may experience difficulties making phone calls from landlines to cell phones. A few enterprise clients may be experiencing disrupted services,” a statement from Northwestel added.