REFRESH Nelson County Life Magazine HERE

    By Tommy Stafford
    Nelson County Life Magazine ©2008
    Afton, Virginia

    The Martins Store Substation at The Intersection of Route 151 & 6

    Updated 8.14.08 10:30 AM Eastern

    Today we received this mass e-mail update in our e-mail:

    Subject: New message
    Date: August 14, 2008 10:28:41 AM EDT

    Thank you for pre-signing for IBEC BPL on the Martins Store substation. We here at IBEC wanted to keep you updated on the status of the install.

    The pre-sign period will end on August 20th. If you have friends or relatives that may want BPL tell them to be sure and sign up by the 20th to avoid an installation fee.

    Fiber has been installed at the substation. Certain electrical work necessary for the system to accommodate the BPL equipment (pole change outs, transformer installations, etc.) will begin on the 18th. Davis H. Elliott, an electrical contractor, will begin installing the BPL equipment on Monday, August 25th. You may see a Davis H. Elliott or an IBEC truck in you neighborhood or working on your pole over the next few weeks. They will be installing the equipment.

    We are still awaiting the installation of the internet backhaul by Verizon. The BPL gear will not give you access until the backhaul is installed. You will be notified when you should have internet access. Please do not plug in your BPL modem until instructed to do so by IBEC. When you receive your modem, please call tech support to activate it at 1-888-IBEC BPL (423-2275). If you have not yet received your BPL modem, it should be shipping in the next few days.

    We have noticed straw covering trenches at the Martins Store Substation where preparation took place a couple of weeks ago, so it appears from this e-mail some installation infrastructure work has been done. Though the original mail out asking people to pre-sign for BPL installation made it sound as though BPL was right around the corner, no actual date of operation was specified in the mail out, and those who have already paid their $99.00 to IBEC have not been given any specific or generalized target date. As the e-mail above indicates, Verizon Telephone must complete a stage of their work before the internet would actually work, regardless of whether IBEC has completed their work.

    ANYONE, that sees installation crews working or actually get installed themselves, please let us know, and then let us know your browsing experiences once active, so we can post here.

    We’ll keep you posted!

    Previous Posts:
    Updated: 8.1.08 4:40 PM Eastern
    NCL received an update today from Greg Kelly, Member Services & Business Development Director with CVEC’s Nelson headquarters regarding the progress of BPL “deployment” in Nelson County out of the Martins Store Substation. Over the past several days, NCL has noticed several crews with IBEC and others trenching what appears to be cables to the site which look to connect the system to the telephone network backbone for internet.

    Greg tells us:

    “You are correct in that the trenching is for the connections from the Internet to the central BPL equipment and the connections to the three electric circuits that take off from the Martins Store substation. These circuits distribute electric energy north along Route 151, South along Route 151 and southeast along Route 6 to Woods Mill and beyond…..

    Once the preliminary work at the substation is complete, installation crews will follow the electric circuits out from the substation, installing BPL equipment as they go. This equipment will be hung about every 2/3 mile along the distribution lines and next to each customer’s electric transformer (either pole top or pad mount). BPL will become available to different customers on different days and will depend on two factors, the distance from the substation and to the customer’s home and how many customers have enrolled for BPL along the way from the substation. An IBEC service representative will contact each BPL customer when service has been made available at their home to guide them through the BPL modem activation process.

    There has been robust enrollment over the past four weeks. IBEC has updated their deployment maps and is focused on getting underway. Once the field deployment has begun, it will be easy to track the progress of the installation crews as the proceed along the circuits.”

    Greg’s been excellent about keeping us updated and with making sure we provide as accurate information as possible. We are expecting an update next week from IBEC themselves to let us know how they are progressing, so we can let everyone else know.


    Original Post from 7.22.08:
    July the 28th is a date many folks living in more rural sections of Nelson County have been anxiously waiting for. International Broadband Electric Communications, Inc., (IBEC) in conjunction with Central Virginia Electric Cooperative, (CVEC) will begin the deployment of their broadband over power line , (BPL) internet starting next Monday. That’s the day deployment begins, but it will could take several weeks (depending on installation requests and progress) for everyone to have service according to a customer representative at IBEC. A beta test site has already been under operation in the Colleen area for the past couple of years with service to some customers.

    We signed up here at Nelson County Life Magazine last week and have high hopes that BPL is what it has been advertised. Many small businesses like ours, telecommuters, etc. outside of areas like Wintergreen, Lovingston, and Stoney Creek have few broadband options and none of them are very reliable nor inexpensive. Those areas are currently served with high speed options like cable modems or DSL service, not available very far from those locations. In remote areas about the only option is dial up, a slow choice, or satellite internet, an expensive choice in comparison to others, and many times not reliable or at speeds the companies advertise.

    “The importance of the Internet for rural education, employment and health care cannot be overstated and is underscored by the fact that the Internet has only be in use by the average person for less than 15 years,” says Greg Kelly, Member Services & Business Development Director with CVEC’s Nelson headquarters.

    As we have been telling you over the past year, and here too, an aggressive building of cell and internet services is underway by several different carriers. Within the past several weeks, approval has been granted to both Verizon Wireless and Ntelos Wireless for several of their low profile monopole designs that will provide cellular and data services to many under served areas of Nelson. AT & T Wireless already located a site just behind The Wintergreen Fire Department in December of last year.

    A wider view of the Martins Store Substation where the next phase of BPL will begin next week.

    According to information posted on the IBEC website as you signup:

    “The process begins at Martins Store Substation where installation crews connect the internet to the BPL system at the head-end of three electric circuits. One circuit travels along Route 151 south. Another circuit travels along Route 151 north. The third circuit follows Route 6 to Route 29 at Woods Mill, then splits to follow Route 29 north and south. One of these circuits deliveries energy to your home or business.

    Installation crews will follow each circuit, attaching BPL equipment about every 1/2 mile along the circuits and at the premises of the customers who have pre enrolled for BPL service. The BPL equipment controls the radio frequency signal that carries the BPL data from the substation to your home or business. One crew should be able to cover about 5 miles per day and the crew will work each line section until deployment is complete.”

    We will continue to follow the progress here on our site and encourage folks to post their experiences with BPL here as installation progresses. This holds great promise for may of us who have had no other options until now.

    We’ll keep you posted!



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