5G mast attacks leave thousands of South Shields mobile phone users with weakened network connections

Thousands of mobile phone users are experiencing weakened signals after vandal attacks on 5G masts.

The spread of 5G conspiracy theories relating to the coronavirus outbreak has led to a number of attacks on masts across the UK.

Mobile network group Mobile UK has described these theories as “baseless” and “not grounded in credible scientific theory”.

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Three O2 sites have been vandalised in the Whiteleas and Westoe areas of South Tyneside since the start of June.

During June and July, three O2 mast sites have been attacked in the South Shields area.During June and July, three O2 mast sites have been attacked in the South Shields area.
During June and July, three O2 mast sites have been attacked in the South Shields area.

All three incidents have been reported to Northumbria Police and O2 says it would not hesitate to inform the authorities of any further criminal damage done to its network equipment.

O2 could not confirm the extent or nature of the damage done to the masts, which have now been taken offline, leaving more than 5,700 O2 customers in the area with weakened network connectivity.

The masts provide critical 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G connectivity for residents and business that serve a large proportion of residential areas across South Shields.

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O2 engineers are working hard to get the masts back online as soon as possible.

In the meantime, impacted residents can check in on O2’s Network Status tracker to access the latest information and register for updates.

Emma Evans, Head of Network Experience at O2 said: “Sadly, a number of customers in South Shields may be experiencing weakened connectivity following attacks that took place on masts in the Whiteleas and Westoe areas.

“These masts connect local residents and businesses to our 2G, 3G, 4G and 5G networks, which work together to keep the country connected, support the economy, help vulnerable people reach loved ones and allow essential services and providers to respond to those in need.

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“As the UK focuses on rebuilding the economy and protecting people’s health and wellbeing, it’s vital we continue to invest in our network to keep Britain mobile and connected.

"We’d like to assure customers that our engineers are working as fast as they possibly can to bring these masts back online so people in the South Shields community can get back to enjoying summer safely with a strong and reliable mobile network connection.”

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