Case Study Location: residential property at Eatons Hill, QLD

Affected: Yes, damage caused to Major Communications network, 3 OPTIC FIBRE CABLES and two large copper cables.

A family was happily living in a quiet residential area, and after seven years of buying the property, they decided to have some work done in their yard to control the spread of tree roots. A “tree root barrier” contractor was hired to come in and dig trenches at various spots within the property.

Although the contractor did engage a professional locator to locate some services (i.e., water, sewer) which were on the property a search for communications network was not undertaken. Excavations proceeded —– until disaster struck. What the contractor did not know was that he had been digging alongside major communications cables, and with a slight change of direction, three optic fibre and two large copper cables were cut!

The damage costs were in the hundreds of thousands of dollars!

By law, Communications carriers are allowed to install cables through private property. Because there is no requirement to take out an easement, details of underground cables will not appear on the owner’s title deed.

The communications carrier will seek to recover costs from the person/s responsible for the damage to their communications assets. The sad part is that these damage costs, which will be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, could have been avoided by conducting a Telco Cable Search for less than $100.

To avoid this costly situation, always conduct a Telco Cable Search!


Case Study Location: Valla, NSW North Coast
Property Affected: Yes, Heavily affected property costing thousands…

This property was about to be purchased and just prior to settlement a search revealed that the property was negatively impacted by Communications Network. All of the preliminary investigations failed to reveal this network of hidden underground cables within this property. This unfortunately cost thousands of dollars in the planning and design work stages!
Major Optic Fibre cables and local cables pass through the property. This Major Optic Fibre network connects the east coast of Australia. Nth QLD to Brisbane, Brisbane to Sydney, Sydney to Melbourne. Fortunately, the solicitor undertook a Telco Cable Search which revealed the extent of communications network within the property prior to earthworks, which may have
resulted in extensive damage fines, likely in the millions of dollars.

  • The cost to repair this network, along with damage costs would be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, who will be held responsible?
  • What is the value of this property now that it has limited uses?

Make an informed decision on what lies within the property and how it affects the property’s use and ultimately the property’s value.