Free audio stream, including stories that are padlocked on our site. Listen on any device, anywhere. Updated twice daily. The audio stream takes several seconds to start on Android devices.Launch Radio player
UPDATE / May 10: There is closure in our feel-good broadband infrastructure story.
Earlier this week, a $145,0000 Chorus Whisper cabinet was bowled by careless West Auckland driver.
It looked gone for all money, but in something of a Westie broadband miracle, still managed to pump fast internet to most of the neighbourhood.
Now, Chorus says the cabinet has been replaced. The team have just forwarded this pic.
Snappy work guys - but note the reader comment below about installing a couple of bollards to protect that $145,000 investment.
Click to zoom.
$145K cabinet demolished by car in West Auckland 'still working, somehow' - Chorus
May 8: Yesterday afternoon, a Geekzone member posted photos of a car vs Chorus cabinet incident in Metcalfe Rd, Henderson.
The $145,000 Whisper Cabinet looks to have been utterly demolished in the collision.
The vehicle appears to have caused the most Westie of broadband outages.
Remarkably, that's not the case.
"It’s largely still working, somehow," Chorus spokesman Ian Bonnar told NBR ONLINE.
"It's obviously very badly damaged," he adds.
"We had 12 faults reported on it immediately after the crash, but there was enough slack in the cables that the disruption was limited, and it’s running on battery power."
A replacement cabinet is being installed today and should be operational tomorrow, Mr Bonnar says.
And were the people in the car okay?
"The occupants of the vehicle left the scene, so I think your question about their health might be better directed to the local police," the Chorus man says.
An intact Whisper Cabinet in Mt Albert, in Auckland's inner West. (Photos above and below: Chris Keall)
Manufactured by Christchurch company called Eaton Power Quality, each Chorus Whisper cabinet weighs 240kg, and is anchored with 2 tonnes of concrete.
To protect the Alcatel-Lucent gear inside each $145,000 cabinet from thieves and the weather (but not it seems, West Auckland drivers) each is made from marine-grade aluminium.
Chorus installed 3600 roadside fibre cabinets nationwide during a recent network upgrade as part of a drive to deliver 10Mbit/s+ internet to more than 80% of New Zealanders. The cabinets are connected to local phone exchanges by fibre, reducing the amount of slower copper in the local loop.