GiffGaff network taken down by burst water pipe

Super cheap phone network suffers outage thanks to supplier's kit getting an unscheduled bath.

Super-cheap phone operator GiffGaff's network has gone down, according to an update on its community pages.

My colleague Rich Trenholm is a GiffGaffer -- and despite having three bars on his phone he can't currently make or receive any calls. (So memo for Rich's mum: please send him an email instead.)

The network outage has been caused by a power problem hitting one of GiffGaff's suppliers -- which in turn has been fingered as a burst water mains pipe wreaking H2O havoc with some of their kit. Nothing to do with GiffGaff becoming too popular for its own good then.

GiffGaff is asking users not to report the network outage because it's already working to fix it.

"The engineers are still on the scene and are currently assessing the damage. We are expecting a call from them before 1pm to give us more information and we will of course update you as soon as we know," notes an official posting on the forum.

As well as loss of service, GiffGaffers might be encountering other problems at the moment -- such as your balance or goodybags appearing as 'n/a' in your account.

Some incoming texts might be being delivered, according to GiffGaff. "Some incoming texts are working, some are not. If a text is shown on the sender's end as sent but has not arrived on the recipient's handset, then it will be retried later. You will receive these messages after the issue is fixed," it notes.

"We have identified a possible workaround for voice only," it adds. "More information on this coming up soon."

The outage is even affecting GiffGaff's ability to update its community pages properly, which is why it hasn't posted a more prominent notification about the outage.

For more updates on the outage check this community page.

Let us know if you're experiencing a loss of service down in the comments, or over on the Facebook page.

Update: "This is a serious issue and as a company we are taking this very seriously," GiffGaff told us. "We are in constant communication with those fixing the problem and are making sure our supplier is dealing with this as a matter of urgency.

"Our team is working hard to keep our members continually updated through our community forum and social media channels as the situation develops. We appreciate that this is extremely inconvenient for our members and offer our sincere apologies as we work to fix this problem."

Update: GiffGaff has posted an update on its community page saying "data should now be working for all customers".

It recommends rebooting your phone to get data up and running again. However CNET UK's Rich Trenholm is still sans data -- let us know if data is working for you by posting a comment below.

Update: GiffGaff has moved on to a voice workaround -- posting this update just after 4pm: "Engineers are implementing a workaround for voice services now. Voice services should be working for some customers and will continue to become available within the next hour or two for the rest. If your voice services are not working yet please be patient as the workaround is being rolled out across the country."

While you're here, why not check out this week's phone news?

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