By Richard Chirgwin

December 20, 2017

The fragile Sea-Me-We 3 cable that provides one of Australia's primary connections to Asia is out of action and awaiting repair.

The break was first announced by Vocus on December 3. At that time, the company's status page said the cut was around 1,126 km from the cable's Singapore landing station (that would put the break in the vicinity of Jakarta).

Yesterday, the Vocus status page included an announcement that a repair ship has been assigned to the task.

Subject to approvals, Vocus said, repairs should be completed by January 9, 2018.

Sea-Me-We 3 has been in service since 1999, and has suffered cuts in 2008, 2014, twice in 2015, and again this year.

The Singapore Strait isn't just a crowded sea-lane: the country is hone to a large number of Asian cable landings, and storm breaks aren't uncommon. The storm that cut Sea-Me-We 3 earlier this year also took out the Asia Submarine-Cable Express, TGA-Intra Asia, and the Asia-American Gateway cable.

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