Repaving streets reveal Google fiber buried too close to surface - WSMV News 4

Repaving streets reveal Google fiber buried too close to surface

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Contractors tore Google fiber lines while repaving roads in East Nashville. The fiber may not have been buried the required depth below the surface. (WSMV) Contractors tore Google fiber lines while repaving roads in East Nashville. The fiber may not have been buried the required depth below the surface. (WSMV)
NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Tyler Thompson said it was a Google fiber bloodbath.

“It was like a horror movie almost, like you saw them coming through with the big machine, and just all the wires were going everywhere,” said the East Nashville resident.

Working from home on Calvin Avenue, she’d watched from her front porch as public works contractors began to remove the top layer of her street for repaving, and immediately tore into the Google Fiber lines beneath.

Down the street, Kyle Komline knew the promises of non-stop high-speed internet service would come to a sudden halt.

“The cable is supposed to be buried deep enough that this wouldn't happen when they paved. And we signed up for Google fiber knowing it wouldn't be interrupted for paving,” Komline said.

Both Thompson and Komline both work from home and had no internet service for days.

“It is definitely a first world problem when you're not on the clock, but when you're on the clock it's a major inconvenience,” Thompson said.

According to records from Metro Public Works, five others locations - Westbend Drive, Eastbend Drive, Croley Drive, Maxon Avenue and Franklin Street - have had Google fiber lines torn apart when repaving projects began.

Komline said it was apparent that the lines had been buried too shallow.

“It just seemed really poorly done,” Komline said.

Cortnye Stone, a spokeswoman for Metro Public Works, said seven months ago the city mandated that fiber lines be buried four inches deep, including on repair project.

But the News4 I-Team took a tape measure to see how deep the lines were re-buried and found at the corner of 15th Street and Calvin Avenue, the fiber was buried only two inches deep.

“It's not any deeper, it's just exactly the same,” Komline said.

Before the city’s mandate last December, records through Metro Public Works showed Google pulled 214 permits to lay fiber lines.

It is unclear how deep the lines were buried on those projects.

The News4 I-Team went to two different Google offices in Nashville and were told there was no one we could talk to face to face and that we would have to email in our request.

Through their public relations company, a statement from Google read in part, “We're working with the city to repair the damaged fiber lines as quickly as possible and get customers back online."

We wanted to know how deep Google had buried the fiber lines for all of their 594 permits pulled since they began work, but the public relations representative said the statement was all that would be released.

“All of my friends around the neighborhood, they have Google fiber, and they're scared this is going to happen. It’s like, I hope our street doesn’t need any construction,” Thompson said.

Stone said the repairs to the fiber lines don’t cost the city any money and that Google has promised the city that the damaged lines will be repaired within two to three days.

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