Karen Ireland examines the rolled up phone cable that was brought down by an unknown vehicle on Friday evening, cutting off ph
Karen Ireland examines the rolled up phone cable that was brought down by an unknown vehicle on Friday evening, cutting off ph

Phone cut no joke to on-line student

By LEE McDOUGALL

MORE than 50 residents in the Grant Close/Taloumbi Road area woke up on Saturday morning to find they had lost their phone service.

Branch Close resident Karen Ireland said her husband returned from working night shift at 4am on Saturday to discover what he initially thought was power lines across lying across the road.

In attempting to notify the police of the situation, he quickly discovered that the metres of cable on the ground was in fact the phone line.

A mobile call to Telstra resulted in a technician arriving mid-morning to 'assess' the situation, but little was done to repair the fault over the weekend.

"The Telstra guy arrived, rolled up the cable, taped it to the power pole, and left," Mrs Ireland said.

"When I spoke to Telstra (yesterday) morning, I was told that the case had been closed as the problem had been fixed. A new case number then had to be issued before work could begin on fixing the problem.

"It's beyond a joke. There's this big push to sell Telstra, yet they can't even fix the phone lines."

Mrs Ireland is studying an optical dispensing course via long-distance education, with many of the course information provided on-line."I have an exam on Friday and I won't have internet access all week," a frustrated Mrs Ireland said yesterday.

However, the Mid North Coast area manager for Telstra, Mr Michael Sharpe, said the problem would be fixed within Telstra's customer service guarantee, which was between three to five days.

He said the problem was assessed by a technician on Saturday, who determined that it could not be repaied immediately.

The technician 'secured the cable' for safety with a contractor expected to begin repairing the problem as soon as weather permits.



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