The reliability of the optical bidirectional path switched ring (OBPSR) network is studied by using optical networking equipment (ONE) with microelectromechanical system (MEMS)-based optical switching fabrics. The reliability of the wavelength path in OBPSR networks is shown to be highly dependent on redundant schemes of switching fabrics in the ONE. This study proposes a new redundant scheme utilizing optical couplers together with controlled switch fabrics without using active selectors, and shows that reliability of the wavelength path can be remarkably improved. A fast redundant switching operation of 10 ms was experimentally confirmed with a prototype of the ONE based on the proposed redundant switching fabrics. Furthermore, interworking operations in terms of the protection and restoration between the optical layer and the Internet protocol (IP) layer are experimentally investigated. In a 500-km optical ring network, fast wavelength path protection switching was confirmed without reconfiguring the link state database of the IP layer, and the measured protection time in the IP layer was as short as 21 ms.