Rīga plans to clear out unauthorized cables in apartment buildings

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The largest housing manager in Rīga, Rīgas namu pārvaldnieks (RNP), is preparing to launch illegal cable removal in multi-apartment buildings this year, Latvian Radio reported January 14.

Krists Leiškalns, a representative of RNP, explained that the decision on the need to review the infrastructure of the cable network in multi-apartment buildings was taken due to several reasons.  Half of the cables are unused in some houses, and many do not meet fire safety requirements.

“The wires are very often not marked, often located in places where they should not be located, such as ventilation shafts. Internet service representatives tend to break the locks for shared spaces – attic or basement keys. There are cases where rooftops are damaged, roof hatches are left open and our customers' apartments are flooded. There are unauthorized connections to shared electrical outlets, which is not acceptable because in this case, all apartment owners are paying for electricity, not those who use a particular service,” said Leiškalns.

The Latvian Internet Association expressed concern about the decision to remove the cables. Chair of the Association board Andris Āriņš said: “On the association side, we are also definitely in favor of legal networks. It should be stressed that the 4,000 houses operated by the RNP have been built way before there was the Internet, and many where there are no shafts for communications systems. The mess is there. Audits and arrangements should be carried out. The main concern is to identify which cables are inactive, illegal so that it does not happen that they cut off something that is both legal and active by mistake.”

Leiškalns from the RNP said that Internet service providers should coordinate their connections with apartment owners and managers. The company is currently developing an assessment schedule first, and it is agreed that representatives from the Latvian Internet Association will also participate in this process.

“But it is absolutely clear that it will take several years to put this problem fully in order,” said Leiskalns.


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