back to article Comcast fixes broadband cables 'peppered' with holes after Oakland drive-by shooting

Comcast Xfinity technicians have restored service to customers in Oakland, California, after the ISP's overhead cables were seemingly pierced by gunfire early Sunday morning. "The outage lasted from morning to early evening yesterday," Comcast California spokesperson Joan Hammel told The Register in an email, noting that the …

  1. ShadowSystems Silver badge

    A funny coincidence...

    My Comcast service in Central California dropped out this evening between 1300~1600Hrs PST. I'd rebooted my cable modem & then my entire computer trying to force a recync, to no avail. I left it alone while I ate supper, came back, forced a refresh of all the "you don't have a connection" failed tabs, and suddenly I'm back up & online.

    I'm not sure what caused the downtime, I'm not sure what they did to fix it, I'm just glad they recovered before I started going into withdrawls.

    =-J

  2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Joke

    Oakland

    The shooter was probably fed up with Cessna 172s doing low level passes over Oakland and was trying to take some down

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Oakland

      The shooter would do better at 3:30 PM rather than 3:30 AM if it’s 172s that they are after.

      1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: Oakland

        Cessna 172 - the default aircraft on Sublogic/MS Flight Simulator

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Murrica!

    Where guns are protected and people make do.

    1. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re: Murrica!

      Where evolution has gone into reverse.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Re: Murrica!

        Would that be devolution or revolution?

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Murrica!

          Convolution.

      2. Gene Cash Silver badge

        Re: Murrica!

        Where evolution has gone into reverse.

        I'd normally downvote... but as an American, I have to stop and agree.

    2. julian.smith
      FAIL

      Re: Murrica!

      Oh, but ain't that America for you and me?

      Ain't that America somethin' to see, baby?

      We're not laughing with you ... we're laughing at you

      Evolution in reverse

  4. sreynolds Silver badge

    This is why we can't have nice things....

    What a crack shot - out of 17 alleged AI determined rounds that's pretty good shooting. Given Comcasts stellar reputation and the general high regard with which cable companies are held, I doubt that any jury would convict him of *willfully* causing damage to Comcast infrastructure.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things....

      It's only good shooting if the cable is what the shooter was aiming at. :-)

      On the other hand, WTF is a relatively major fibre serving such a large population doing on poles exposed to the elements? Is that not the sort of cable that should be buried with all the other utilities?

      1. sreynolds Silver badge

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things....

        The only thing that I know about HFC is that it is shit. My aussie mates were so pissed when Fibre to the Home was ditched, in their opinion only to support a large Terlco.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_fiber-coaxial shows that typically the Coax hanging the air can go to 2000 premises with amps along the way.

  5. chivo243 Silver badge
    Pirate

    Rockford!

    Been there, lived in Northern Il, I took a MS Cert exam there over a decade ago. Not surprising about shootings there. Not as bad as Chicago, and only an hour away...

    1. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: Rockford!

      Not as bad as Chicago

      And the funny thing is Chicago has the toughest gun laws in the country.

      1. Ian Johnston Silver badge

        Re: Rockford!

        Much as California has the strictest earthquake-resistant building codes?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rockford!

        'And the funny thing is Chicago has the toughest gun laws in the country.'

        NO, it does not:

        https://www.bettergov.org/news/fact-check-chicago-toughest-on-gun-control-claim-doesnt-hold-up

        Chicago is also just a short drive away from Indiana, which has very permissive gun laws (even by US standards). Thanks for the Faux News talking points tho.

        1. Ghostman

          Re: Rockford!

          What does being close to Indiana have to do with Chicago crimes? Are people from Indiana coming to Chicago and committing murder, just to leave and go home.

          PolitiFact is not someplace I would look for unbiased news.

          But, to make you feel better, Chicago DOES have some of the most restrictive gun laws on the books.

          A politician, entertainer, sports hero, and people that make large contributions to the "party in control"

          can get a gun permit and concealed carry. How about they let the folks that need that protection from the ones that prey on the defenseless have firearms? Why does those in charge go into some neighborhoods only with a platoon of police/swat protection but don't allow those who live there a chance to protect themselves and their loved ones?

          Have you ever read the US Constitution? What is the first three words of the preamble? Who does the 2nd Amendment give the right to "keep and bear arms"? It damn sure isn't the militia.

          1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

            Re: Rockford!

            “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

            It damn sure is ambiguous. As a professional editor, I'd certainly query the author as to their meaning and suggest it should be restructured for clarity. Sadly, we don't have that option. Furthermore, the fact that it is by its very name an amendment suggests that these things can, by their very definition, be changed (<- that's how you use parenthetical commas: I'm looking at you, William Lambert).

      3. julian.smith
        Pint

        Re: Rockford!

        And the funny thing America has world class homicide rates

        It's not a problem ... they are only killing Americans [it's natural selection - unfortunately it takes a long time]

        .. oh wait

    2. Roger Greenwood

      Re: Rockford!

      I hope their files are ok...

  6. Securitymoose
    Joke

    Argument in favour of gun ownership in the UK?

    I wonder how many of our road speed extortion revenue cameras would survive if everyone had a firearm. It's the first benefit I've been able to identify from owning one (apart from shooting people who don't clear up their dog mess that is).

    1. Paul Herber Silver badge

      Re: Argument in favour of gun ownership in the UK?

      I saw someone the other day *blatantly* refusing to step on the cracks in the pavement. His shirt was too loud as well.

      1. Fr. Ted Crilly Bronze badge

        Re: Argument in favour of gun ownership in the UK?

        And going equiped with an offensive wife?

        1. Ian Johnston Silver badge

          Re: Argument in favour of gun ownership in the UK?

          Oooh, that's savage.

          1. The other JJ

            Re: Argument in favour of gun ownership in the UK?

            "Sorry Sarge, was that your hedgehog sir?"

  7. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

    Wow.

    Just, wow. So the gun problem in America has got so bad they need automated microphone-based AI systems to keep an eye on it? At what point does someone think, "you know, maybe people shouldn't be able to buy guns at supermarkets"?

    1. Paul Herber Silver badge

      Re: Wow.

      Spend $200 on groceries, get a free gun. It's the law.

      1. lglethal Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: Wow.

        I've always leaned towards the Dave Chappele Solution (I think it was Dave anyway).

        Everyone should be given guns for free. But Bullets, they'll cost you $1000 per Bullet. I mean Guns are protected by the 2nd Amendment, but there's no mention of Bullets in there. And if each Bullet is going to cost you $1000, you're going to have to REALLY want to kill someone to spend that money to try and shoot them...

        1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

          I don't know about Dave Chappele, but Chris Rock said pretty much the same thing in one of his stand-ups.

          1. badflorist

            I think before that it was Lenny Bruce who asked a mayor: What if it wasn't my gun, just my bullet?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Wow.

          This is fine until someone invents frickin' lasers pistols/rifles then all bets are off again.

          1. DevOpsTimothyC Bronze badge

            Re: Wow.

            This is fine until someone invents frickin' lasers pistols/rifles then all bets are off again.

            But they are LASER guns which are not protected under the 2nd amendment.

            1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

              Re: Wow.

              Arguable. https://www.quora.com/Does-the-second-amendment-include-atomic-biological-and-chemical-arms

              Captain Kirk had a ray gun, so there's a constitutional right to ray guns. And lightsabers. Once supermarkets get around to stocking them.

        3. ThatOne Silver badge

          Re: Wow.

          > if each Bullet is going to cost you $1000

          Won't work, you can easily make your own. Many competition shooters and hunters do it, all you have to do is pick up your empty casings, it's the only part you can't easily make in your garage.

          Now there is a limit on how many times you can reuse a casing before it's bound to fail (mostly in an annoying but not dangerous way), but it does definitely help lower the bill, even with the current ammunition prices.

          Besides, your idea would put police forces in a big danger: They'd be running around in disreputable neighborhoods with a $10-20k in bullets on them... :-D

          1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

            Re: Wow.

            US police forces are already in danger: everyone has guns.

            1. ThatOne Silver badge

              Re: Wow.

              > US police forces are already in danger: everyone has guns.

              Yes, but right now they don't run around with $10-20000 of potential booty. Just stuff their pockets with stacks of unmarked dollar bills as they go on patrol, and watch what will happen to them...

            2. Insert sadsack pun here Silver badge

              Re: Wow.

              US people are already in danger: all the police have guns.

              https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/investigations/police-shootings-database/

              https://gothamist.com/news/nypds-firearms-training-woefully-inadequate-former-trainers-say

          2. Ghostman

            Re: Wow.

            Won't work, you can easily make your own. Many competition shooters and hunters do it, all you have to do is pick up your empty casings, it's the only part you can't easily make in your garage.

            you can, but there is a lot of physical work and effort, not to mention the cost of the drawing dies and press. you could use a 20 ton bench press in a pinch.

            https://www.shootingtimes.com/editorial/ammunition_making_brass_101910/99835

            Now there is a limit on how many times you can reuse a casing before it's bound to fail (mostly in an annoying but not dangerous way), but it does definitely help lower the bill, even with the current ammunition prices.

            Ammo prices are out of sight right now. Last gun show I went to a box of 20 9mm defense loads was $69.99.

            FMJ went for almost $100 per 50 round box. Luckily, I reload.

            Getting back to the making of cartridge cases, the Filipino Scouts and irregular troops made some of their 30-06 cases from curtain rods while being chased by the Japs in WWII.

        4. vincent himpe

          Re: Wow.

          better: mandate insurance. Each gun needs to be insured for owner liability. to be paid just like car insurance : every 6 months, per gun.

          the insurance industry would destroy the gun industry ...

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Wow.

            Didn't some State or other just do that? Or is talking about it?

          2. ThatOne Silver badge

            Re: Wow.

            > better: mandate insurance.

            Just a pity criminals usually don't respect laws...

    2. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge

      Re: Wow.

      (at least two 'merkins don't want us Briddish to take their guns away, cos freedom or something)

    3. Insert sadsack pun here Silver badge

      Re: Wow.

      "So the gun problem in America has got so bad they need automated microphone-based AI systems to keep an eye on it?"

      If it makes you feel any better, the ShotSpotter system is completely crap, as covered by El Reg last year: https://www.theregister.com/2021/08/25/shotspotter_chicago_report/

      1. Hubert Cumberdale Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: Wow.

        Why would that make me feel better?!

  8. Anonymous Coward Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Similar here

    I've had a bloody noisy pigeon shouting from my aerial. Took an air rifle to it. Managed to hit the cable feeding a wireless link on the same mast. Connection was intermittent from then until I climbed up there and found the damage.

    1. Anonymous South African Coward Silver badge

      Re: Similar here

      Andy Capp'll be a-knockin' on your door for trying to pot his pet pigeon...

  9. Kane Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    OnCall

    Expecting the obligatory OnCall story here in a couple of years.

  10. AdamT

    overhead wires - why?

    I don't know if this is all of the US but are none of these cables (power or comms) ever buried? I get that initial spend on install is cheaper than digging trenches and laying conduits but the number of outages must be way higher - every car chase/crash video on youtube ends up with some utility pole being taken out!

    1. Antonius_Prime
      Trollface

      Re: overhead wires - why?

      Well, you have to remember, that at this stage, the Left Pondian's could very well be considered a third world nation in many important aspects.

      I just don't want to see Bono putting on a concert in their aid though...

      Or in general...

    2. ThatOne Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: overhead wires - why?

      > are none of these cables (power or comms) ever buried?

      It's a sure-fire way to know where a photo was taken: If you see lines of power/telephone masts overloaded with cables running along the streets, you most likely are in the USA (alternatively South America, Russia or Africa). If there are no masts visible anywhere, except in the most remote boonies, you're in Europe...

      1. julian.smith
        FAIL

        Re: overhead wires - why?

        Wait until you visit Japan

        ... nice country but there are no laws against ugliness

        ... and it shows.

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