CNMI college communications severely affected

1:53 pm on 15 July 2015

The Northern Marianas College says a territory-wide communications blackout is having a severe effect on some of its operations.

Northern Marianas College

Photo: RNZ Mark Rabago

The sole undersea fibre optic cable to Guam was severed by a boulder last week, cutting all phone, internet, banking and other services to the outside world.

The cable's owner, IT&E, says while it awaits a boat from Taiwan to fix the cable, it has installed a fibre optic cable on Rota that promises to increase the internet speed on Saipan.

The director of external relations at the Northern Marianas College, Frankie Eliptico, says the college relies heavily on social media and email to communicate with students.

"We have very limited access to email, though it's very slow, very spotty. We still are getting very, very glacial paced connection through other social media, so we're not able to post information as quickly or as much for our students."

Mr Eliptico says he hopes services are back to full speed before the new semester.

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