Seasonality effects in certain exchange areas

As regards quality of service provided by PTC under the RUO in certain exchange areas where, it is alleged, waiting times for the resolution of faults far exceed those defined in the targets, due, above all, to higher rainfall in certain months, it is ICP-ANACOM's position that, for better analysis of the situation and to gauge the possible effect of seasonality, PTC shall provide ICP-ANACOM with details of:

(a) faults occurring since January 2011 (inclusive) and up to the most recent month for which it has information available in the exchange areas of the Greater Porto and the exchange area of Caneças. This information is to contain the average and maximum time periods for the repair of faults, for 95 per cent of cases, separated by beneficiary OSP. This information should be provided on a monthly basis and by exchange area. PTC shall also send the same type of information, as regards the times taken to repair faults as practised in the provision of its broadband and FTS retail offers.

(b) the measures already taken, or planned, pursuant to the offer and the areas in question, which are aimed at minimizing the faults usually associated with months of higher rainfall.

The quantitative information submitted by PTC does not appear to show that Optimus, or any other RUO beneficiary, is suffering discrimination as regards repair time, compared to PTC's own customers. In fact, these situations arise in large part due to acts of vandalism (theft and damage of PTC's copper cabling) which, in months of higher rainfall, are more a factor of concurrency that ultimately limit the capacity of the technical teams to intervene, affecting both PTC customers and the customers of RUO beneficiaries. PTC also alluded to the fact that the mass deployment of the RDAO has resulted in a greater diversity of parties intervening in PTC's ducts and in an increase in situations which, owing to less diligent handling of cables, are likely to give rise to damaged cable insulation or joints with consequent exposure to moisture. This situation, combined with weather conditions, restrict PTC's capacity to intervene, limiting the possibility of intervention being performed with reasonable timing.

Nevertheless, PT reports that in order to counteract and reduce the effects of adverse conditions, it has developed a set of preventive measures, namely:

(a) The installation of alarms on physical infrastructure - copper cables in areas with higher incidence of theft and subsequent alerts, working closely with police authorities to respond quickly whenever alarms are activated.

(b) In the particular case of the Caneças exchange, implementation of measures to supervise/monitor compressor functioning, to allow the existence of a pressurized network of dry cables.

(c) Replacement of older copper network cables and of cables showing evident signs of degradation with new cables, whenever technically possible and feasible.

Accordingly, even while it is recognised that these are exceptional situations which entail complex solutions, it is expected that the measures being developed by PTC, together with the reporting of situations with common faults to the offer beneficiaries, will mean that the impact of this type of fault will be minimised.