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Message 1 of 7

Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

My neighbour who is a "Angry of Mayfair"/Mr "you don't want to do it like that, you want to do it like this" hybrid is swearing blind that my felling of a fir tree has pulled his wire between his house and the pole

Despite the fact the tree never even pulled his connection to the normal world, Is there a standard for the dip/slack for a given length?

There is no evidence of any pulling at either end but how can I show it is still to spec.

If he keeps banging on I'll just ask he gets BT to check it and if they say it is stretched I'll pay for the engineer and the tweak.

Do BT log line quality so I can come back if he says his line has degraded?

Many thanks

Dr B
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Message 2 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

Afaik, there isn't a spec for slack/dip in an overhead cable, but the cable needs to maintain a minimum height above whatever type of ground it's over, so over a footpath or garden it's allowed to be 'lower' than over a carriageway, and if the road is a high load route then the height can be even higher still, I'm not sure if the exact heights are public knowledge, but over an ordinary road it's something like 5.9 metres, over a garden maybe 4.5 , but that is nothing more than a guess.

BT are service provider, Openreach are responsible for the provision and maintenance of the network, but they cannot test a line and check if it's worse than it used to be, if it works and no fault is detected then that's good enough, TBH , if the line is working without any noise , then calling out OR to look at it would probably be chargeable , if someone did come out they may ( as part of the visit ) retention the line , but only if it were necessary 

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Message 3 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

Q1: Any idea of what the charge would be for O.R. to come out and re-tighten or not?

Q2: If the cable has a sub-standard dip with no evidence of any damage to the mountings at either end, would O.R. retension it for nowt? (i.e. NO callout fee.  

Q3: I will check the height of his wire in the morning and if it is still above spec we are laughing, I assume if it is in spec O.R. would not retension it unnecessarily if they attended?

I am happy to pay for any damage that the gravitation field of the passing tree perturbed in his wire (i.e. NOTHING!) but would relish the opertunity to prove it in an expensive manner.

Thanks for your reply in any case, I will tell him that if they come out and there is no functional problem with the line, he pays. Since it is related to his line, this would be the default, i.e. he requests the engineer at his expense. 


Dr B

n.b. The bloke is a local legend for the level of his dysfunctional interaction with his neighbours, I have just been added to the identity parade of suspects if he disappears.

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Message 4 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

Is the permissible height given in a published specification? 

Where can i get a copy of the relevent standard?


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Message 5 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

There is no spec.

Why are you even listening to him. If he thinks he has a problem with his line tell him to report it to Openreach and let him pay any charges they make for an abortive visit.

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Message 6 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

I think I will tell him to report it to OR and get them to check it out for him.

I have public liability cover, it appears, on my home insurance, so I will get them involved in the process so that will obfusicate things to my satisfaction!

Thanks for the feedback!

Dr B 

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Message 7 of 7

Re: Standard for 'slack' in overhead phone cables

Haven’t got time for pirkcs like that so I’d be inclined to tell him to go ‘duck’ himself.