Comcast Discovers that Burying a Cable Requires Digging a Trench

I got up at 8am in case a Comcast person turned up at our door without phoning. I felt for some reason that I ought to be fully dressed for such an occasion.

No one turned up from 8-10, of course, and no one called either.

But some time not long after 10am, a Comcast cable moving person appeared at our door. Unfortunately by then we’d given up and gone out to forage for the week’s food. I left my son to hold down the fort, and what follows is based on his report.

It seems our work order is in the system as “low hanging cable” and therefore Comcast has not yet gotten its collective mind around the idea that it should be buried rather than moved. The guy we got today had equipment for burying a cable – to wit, a shovel – but looking over our yard he decided that the cable would have to be buried more than six inches deep. That means the trench is beyond the capabilities of shovel technology, and requires some actual mechanical digging equipment. This, alas, he did not have. As a result he is passing the buck to one of Comcast’s contractors, people who have the equipment that will dig a trench. (Why the cable needs to be buried more than six inches and/or why this fact was not evident to last week’s guy, is opaque to me … unless it was that last week’s guy, being unequipped with shovel technology, was himself in no danger of having to dig a quite long trench.) Today’s guy took some photos and assured my son that the contractor would turn up at some unspecified date and time this week, but not to worry as it was all outside work and we didn’t need to be home. The way it works is that the contractor digs the trench, lays the wire and fills up the hole, but doesn’t actually connect the wire to the house. That job is reserved for true Comcast people who come at some later time to disconnect the old wire (and, I hope, remove it) and connect up the new one.

The idea of some contractor turning up at a random time and digging trenches in my back yard based on photos doesn’t fill me with glee, especially given that there are sprinkler lines and the AT&T phone wire buried down there just waiting to be severed. I’d like to be here when the contractor comes, but for that to happen (1) I’d have to know when he was scheduled for, and (2) be free then, and not least, (3) he’d actually have to turn up more or less when promised. None of these seem like high-probability events, and if you multiply the three probabilities together you get the sort of small numbers usually associated with the resolution of an electron microscope.

Faith, the lady from “we can help,” told me that her hours were 8-5, Sun-Thursday, so I tried calling her to see if she could tell me when the contractor might be scheduled to turn up. She didn’t answer her phone, but the message tells me that I’ve reached her desk and can leave a message. I guess I’ll try again tomorrow.

[Update: I emailed instead.]

Previously: A Report From Comcast Hell

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3 Responses to Comcast Discovers that Burying a Cable Requires Digging a Trench

  1. Jared says:

    The cable needs to be > 6″ to reduce the chance of it being severed.

    In lower NY it works this way.
    Contractors, or homeowners, must call a free dig marking number 48(?) hours before they dig. Then the utilities are notified and are obligated to come and mark their buried lines.

    In my case, I had a large my fence installed. The gas and water lines were marked about a week before the fence post holes were dug. My electricity and FIOS are above ground.

    Sprinkler lines aren’t marked and are cut with regularity.

  2. Don't care tech says:

    We do this for a living. We don’t control what gets cut the survey crews do. It it isn’t marked then it’s getting fucking cut and you and att or whoever the fuck can deal with it. That is code and rules for digging. There’s a date and if they don’t have it done by then we get the green light to choo the shit out of anything in the way. Too bad so sad. Cry alone because we won’t be there when you get home as we prefer not to listen to the customers bitch about the rules we don’t make he entire time we are trying to make he money that feeds our families and pays our bills! Yes we are just like you and have those! And guess what improbably make more than you think too! Believe it or not they pay me over $50 a hour to cut your shit up! Hahahaha loser.

    • Mark says:

      You sound like a guy who loves his job. School certainly was wasted on you. Good thing you skipped out in the 9th grade and went straight to digging. Just one thing: do you purposely go ahead and dig where you think something should be marked? Even though it isn’t? Thinking ahead is what that’s called. Hope Trump works out for you.
      By the way-your personality suggests a career in the celebrity wedding guest profession. You’re a charmer. You should take advantage of that skill. Easier on your brutish body.

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