Equinix and Telehouse internet outages hit London

21 July 2016 |

Equinix has accepted responsibility for an outage that cut BT customers’ internet access while Telehouse Docklands had its own disaster

Equinix has accepted responsibility for an outage that cut BT and Plusnet customers’ internet access off for a morning yesterday.

Equinix has owned up to a fault at its LD8 peering facility at Harbour Exchange, London, which caused the networking problems for BT. Equinix admitted in an email to customers that a fault with one of its uninterruptible power supplies (UPSs) at LD8 caused the downtime.

The firm claimed that service was restored ‘within minutes’, but end users across reported connection problems all morning. This is an embarrassment for Equinix which recently completed the acquisition of Telecity for £2.3bn, snatching the company from under the nose of Interxion, with which Telecity had been planning a merger.

The outage at Telecity in London, which hosts telecoms networks including fixed-line, mobile and ISPs, is not the first the company has suffered. A power systems failure at Telecity's Sovereign House facility in November 2015 caused two nights of outages.

Telecity was one of the first companies in London to connect internet exchange points, the key interchanges between different network operators and the backbone internet. Therefore when Telecity goes down, organisations across the entire country are affected.

Russell Poole, managing director, Equinix UK told Capacity: “Equinix experienced a brief power outage at the former Telecity LD8 site in London on Wednesday, July 20 at 7:55 am BST.  This impacted a limited number of customers and service was promptly restored.  Equinix engineers have diagnosed the root cause of the issue as a faulty UPS system and are working with our customers to minimise the impact. We regret any inconvenience this has caused. Subsequent to Wednesday morning there have been no further incidents at Equinix sites, however, we are continuing to monitor the situation closely.”

Disaster strikes twice

Less than two miles from Equinix’s stricken LD8 site another outage took place affecting BT Broadband customers and ISPs reliant on BT Openreach. The incident was finally traced to a power failure on the 3rd floor at TFM10 Telehouse North at around 7:45am yesterday. BT described it as a ‘major outage.’

Telehouse said: “We are aware that there has been an issue with the tripping of a circuit breaker within Telehouse North that has affected a specific and limited group of customers within the building. The problem has been investigated and the solution identified. Our engineers are working with our customers on the resolution right now. We will release updates in due course.”

In 2006 a power issue shut down Telehouse’s Docklands facility.

Equinix recently completed the sale of eight European data centres assets to Digital Realty Trust for $874 million as part of its move to acquire Telecity Group. The deal was part of a divestment requested by the European Commission.