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Fire knocks out TV, radio and mobile in North Yorkshire region


A fire at the Bilsdale Transmitter in North Yorkshire has taken out TV and radio services for over 1 million premises in the surrounding area.

Mobile networks have also been affected, with 2G, 3G, and 4G services for EE, O2, Vodafone, and Three UK all experiencing disruption.

The impact of the disruption to mobile services won’t be felt as strongly in some parts as smaller mast and rooftop sites will be able to pick up the slack in larger areas, however, those living in rural villages will feel a significant impact.

A spokesperson for Three UK said: “We’re sorry for any disruption you experience. Our engineers are working on masts nearby, which means the rest of our network is handling more traffic than usual.”

The fire is believed to have been started by a lightning strike, although this is still yet to be confirmed. The fire started in a stone building adjacent to the mast before spreading to the building containing the transmitter.

The blaze was extinguished by the North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Services (NYFRS) who have now voiced concerns about the integrity of the mast. A 300m exclusion zone has been set up around the transmitter.

A BBC spokesperson said: “TV and radio services are being disrupted in parts of North Yorkshire and Teesside following a fire at the Bilsdale transmitter. We’re in close contact with the company that runs the transmitter who are working on restoring services. For those in the affected area, BBC Radio Tees is still available on BBC Sounds and online, as are the BBC’s other radio stations. BBC TV can be viewed through BBC iPlayer and on cable and satellite platforms.”

The NYFRS said in a statement that “a 300m exclusion zone has been put in place around the mast” and that “NYFRS will be working on site tomorrow with Arqiva, the site operators, to bring the incident to a safe conclusion”.

There are reports that Arqiva have begun to move temporary transmitter equipment into the area, however it is unclear how long it will take for the equipment to be operational.

Harry Pererra
Harry Pererra

Harry turns on his experience in journalism and programming to write about the latest news in the world of tech and the environemtn. When he isn’t writing for usave he is working towards his Blue Belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, and prefers dogs to cats.

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