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DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Having browsed through these forums, and having not had any luck with our broadband issue for almost a month now, I can only confirm what other people have said already: while in theory BT Openreach are meant to be independent from BT the internet provider, and all providers – including plusnet – should get the same quality of service and response times to their queries... IF THERE ARE ANY PROBLEMS THAT NEED TO BE SORTED BY BT OPENREACH AND NOT PLUSNET… IT’S A DISASTER.
To cut the long story short, after numerous phone calls and updates on our open issue from plusnet, it’s been almost a month and we’re still without functioning internet… forget working from home, forget streaming videos, forget downloading even some of the larger email attachments… the connection is intermittent, and the speed is, at most, in the range of 0.3 Mb/sec.
We had to arrange for two different engineers to get access to our flat… Finally, the fault has been identified as being with BT Openreach cables, and since then the updates have been pretty much the same – whether on the phone, or through the website. Example: “I have spoken to Openreach further today for an update and the offline team have again been unable to gain an update from the relevant department.”

On top of that, PlusNet support themselves seem a mess, last time I called they were surprised that I didn’t have an update FOR THEM from the BT engineer, rather than this working the other way round i.e. plusnet having an update for me.
Overall a large mess, I try to sympathise with PlusNet to some extent, as clearly a lot of the problems stem from the fact that Openreach are just not responsive enough to the issues raised by Plusnet on my behalf… But this needs to be worked out between the two companies, and I just need to have functioning broadband to be able to work and get what I’m paying for. The conclusion can only be one – PAY A BIT MORE AND GET YOUR PHONE AND BROADBAND FROM BT DIRECTLY..
I’ll try to post updates here but last time I spoke to Plusnet, I was told that it can be “weeks” before the cable is sorted
26 REPLIES
Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Hi there,
I'm sorry that this has happened. By the look of it there's an underground wiring issue that needs to be resolved, and if that means street access whether for a dig or manhole it also means going through the local council etc - I'm guessing here, but that's usually what takes the time on these kind of things.
I assure you we'll keep chasing, but any other ISP - including BT Retail, who aren't actually the same company as BT Openreach, who'll be doing the work.
We'll be chasing for another update tomorrow as per your ticket, I hope it's good news.
PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

thanks. With these underground digs, how long can they take?? Are we talking weeks?
jim:quote
Plusnet Alumni (retired) chrispurvey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 5,369
Fixes: 1
Registered: 13-07-2012

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

It really can vary, some cases days but some cases weeks unfortunately. We'll know more when we get an update tomorrow.
PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Update. Now a full month without functioning broadband. I keep getting updates that I should wait for further details until next day/ next Monday/7 days etc…  Seems like we’re no longer waiting for the problem to be fixed (that was what I was told 2 weeks ago), but merely for an estimated time for the work to start. An update was promised for this morning when I chased up last week, obviously nothing happened, so after another request I am now told … to wait 7 days for an update.
Both my points stand, (A) the communication between PlusNet and Openreach is obviously completely broken, and Plusnet aren’t able to get any kind of specific date out of them. They quote Openreach people being out of office as the reason for that, which to me sounds plain ridiculous, I’m sorry… (B) Plusnet aren’t great at following up on my outstanding issue, it’s me having to chase them for promised updates most of the time.
o2refugee
Grafter
Posts: 37
Registered: 14-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

I completely agree there seems to be absolutely no communication between PN and OR and even less with the customer when fault repairs are involved. I have had my cable repair cancelled twice and am attempting to get it restarted a third time. I had great service from O2 when I had their LLU - no BT involved, but even when BT lines caused issues O2 seemed to get these sorted with no hassle. I get the impression that with PN it is all down to cost saving, as when I tried to get my second attempt at fibre installation installed on a Saturday I was told no - too expensive. I was told before sign up that Saturday installations were possible - BT do them.
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 12,776
Thanks: 108
Fixes: 32
Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Whilst we're not always party to the full details about each fault Openreach deal with for us we can certainly agree that we've not had enough appropriate information about the nature of the issue or details about the repair work needed.
With that in mind we've escalated the issue as we need to push back harder on our suppliers. I'm really sorry that this hasn't happened until now and I hope that this gains the case the extra attention it needs.
It might not be myself chasing for updates on this issue but I'll make sure that we're updating you as often as possible.
Adam
EDIT: An update has come through so I'm just going to update your ticket now.
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Update. 1.5 months without usable broadband now, and the latest I've heard from Plusnet is that this will take quite a bit longer to resolve.
Doesn't stop them from charging me £33 in monthly payments... If that's not ridiculous, I don't know what is.
Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
Posts: 12,776
Thanks: 108
Fixes: 32
Registered: 27-04-2007

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

I'm sorry this is still an issue, as you might already be aware a survey needs to be carried out as temporary traffic management (i.e traffic lights and calming measures) need to be set up before the necessary excavation work needed to fix your line can take place.
I will make sure this gets chased today for you to see if we can find out any more news.
With regards to billing we do fully intend to refund you for the time you've been without service after this has been resolved plus an additional goodwill gesture to show there's no hard feelings.
Adam
If this post resolved your issue please click the 'This fixed my problem' button
 Adam Walker
 Plusnet Help Team
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,531
Thanks: 769
Fixes: 9
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

I know that's the way it has always been, but it's about time that was changed. It may be appropriate when someone is off the air for a few days or weeks, but once it is more than a month it is not appropriate.
He's already a month in credit with his payments, you should be able to put the account on hold so that no further payments are taken until the issue is resolved. If you can't do that why can't you put a £33 credit on his account to nullify the next payment before it's taken?
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

For anyone still having any doubts about how the communication between PlusNet and Openreach works, here are some of the updates that I’ve been receiving on my (still unresolved) ticket for the past 2 months.
18 May: ticket opened
30 May: (after 2 engineer visits): further work will be required.
6 June: “I have spoken with Openreach for a further fault update but they couldn't get in touch with the control department that offers this after numerous lengthy attempts.”
7 June: “I have spoken to Openreach further today for an update and the offline team have again been unable to gain an update from the relevant department.”
12 June: “The fault is currently still with the traffic management team whilst work is carried out to replace underground cables”
15 June: “I have contacted Openreach again today in regards to what is happening with the traffic management that is needed in order to resolve this issue.
At present we have been unable to get a set date for this to happen. Openreach have now submitted an internal escalation to have this looked in to as a matter of urgency on your behalf.”
17 June: “I have spoken to Openreach directly this morning. They have advised that all paperwork has been submitted and we are awaiting commitment from a "Traffic Management" team. They have advised that they will be able to update us on this within 7 days. “
19 June: “Openreach have accepted my escalation request that was sent on the 17th June. They have advised that your fault is linked with a common fault in your area and that "Traffic Management" needs to be requested and actioned before this work can go ahead.”
24 June: “I have checked for an update regarding your fault with BT Openreach today. As this is a common fault in the area that may be affecting several customers, more work is required to resolve the issue. A survey team is scheduled to visit the fault location on the 28/06/13 as Traffic Management is required.”
26 June: “Unfortunately a fix will not take place on your fault in the next few days. The survey needs to take place so that the job can then be planned and dates then given for the work to go ahead. Traffic management will be needed with 2 way traffic lights so that work can go ahead to resolve the fault.”
4 July: “Thank you again to this long period of time for this fault to be resolved. We have spoken to BT Openreach today and again they have been unable to give us a date for when the fault is due to be resolved.”
7 July: “Our suppliers have advised that they are currently in the process of appointing a Precision Testing Officer to work on your line, to determine the exact cause of your fault. We've been advised to expect an update on this on 10/07/13.”
11 July: “I have checked for updates on your fault today and BT have informed me that a precision officer was due to attend yesterday, they were unable to get information following this as they could not get hold of the control department but the review date given is tomorrow.”
12 July: “I have contacted our suppliers today for an update on the progress of your fault. They have been unable to provide an update as to the work that went ahead on 10/07/13.”
13 July: “Unfortunately we have not yet received a response from the escalations team at Openreach and we were not able to get any further information at this time as the department that would be able to provide us with this is currently closed. We have been advised to check for further updates after 7am on Monday. “
15 July: “I have checked for updates on your fault today and BT have informed me that an engineer is currently working on the fault, the control team have advised to check again for details by the end of the day.”
16 July: I’m told that fault has been fixed, yet broadband is just as unusable as it has been for the past 2 MONTHS…
17 July: “I have reviewed the engineer's notes following the resolve of your phone fault and it appears they have been able to resolve the issue without further underground work. Engineers will always endeavour to do this where possible, as it can prevent further delays. It is normal for broadband speeds to be reduced for around 72 hours following work on your line as it settles back down”
BOTTOM LINE: we’ve been waiting 2 months for the issue to be resolved; 90% of time when I chased up on the open ticket, I was told to wait 1 / 2 / 7 days for an update/ETA/issue to be resolved; apparently it’s taking that long because underground work is needed; after 2 months I’m told that underground work is not needed after all; apparently the issue is now fixed; when I complain that it clearly isn’t, I’m told to wait another 72 hours…

THIS IS A JOKE..
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,410
Thanks: 1,000
Fixes: 58
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Quote from: PavZ
THIS IS A JOKE..
Correctuion - it isn't a joke it is a bloody disgrace and somebody - OFCOM - should jump all over this bunch of incompetent idiots
PavZ
Newbie
Posts: 7
Registered: 10-06-2013

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Thanks. More importantly - is it right that "line normally takes 72 hours to settle down and speeds to return to normal levels"?
I'm asking because the whole point here was that the service was ridiculously slow, and intermittent, so I can't see how they could have concluded that it's fine now, but only expect the fix to start working within 72 hours... I'm very confused.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Quote from: PavZ
More importantly - is it right that "line normally takes 72 hours to settle down and speeds to return to normal levels"?

That could be the case, depending how DLM is operating.
PN staff should be able to see some/most of your connection stats and advise if that is the case.
Given the background to this they ought to be doing that anyway and intervening if appropriate.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,780
Thanks: 106
Fixes: 20
Registered: 14-07-2009

Re: DISASTROUS service... almost a month without broadband... use BT instead

Just to compare and contrast, I am on day 15 of waiting for a telephone fault to be fixed.  My broadband is much slower than normal but my telephone is completely dead and BT is my telephone provider so I'm as close to Openreach as you can get.
Day 1  Phone Line becomes very noisy.
Day 3  Two Openreach engineers arrive.  After 2 hours decide the fault is located 2m from their manhole.  The work they do changes the line from noisy to dead.
Day 9  Contractors arrive to dig a hole.  Openreach engineer comes but concludes the hole is in the wrong place and it would be better to run a new duct with new wires.
Day 10 Contractors return to fill in the hole.
Day 15 Still waiting for the next contractors to lay the duct.