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Old 15-03-2013, 06:16 PM
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Kelly Kelly is offline
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Default Katter says Telstra has forgotten residents in north Queensland

Federal MP Bob Katter says Telstra has forgotten residents in north west Queensland, with many in parts of the Gulf without phones, internet or EFTPOS for the past week. The loss of communications was caused when lightning damaged a Telstra tower. Mr Katter, the Member for Kennedy, has called for a federal commissioner to ensure the delivery of communication services. He says it would give residents somewhere to go with their concerns. "(Telstra are( profit driven and (these are a( few people in an obscure part of the world, little north west Queensland, we've only got 40,000 people, 'who cares about them, we get no revenue, (from( them' and that's the situation we're dealing with," he said.

"We (need to( set up a commission to ensure the delivery of essential services in communication and in other areas. "If we had complaints they would go to that commission and they would have teeth to punish people if they didn't deliver the services."

However, Telstra says it will be putting in extra resources to the Gulf region to look at the current fault volume. The company says it has been dealing with an increase in phone line faults in the past few months due to natural disasters. Telstra spokeswoman Jane deGault says the company's response to the region is changing.

"We haven't been as attentive as we would have liked and that has certainly changed in the past week," she said.

"We are certainly putting additional resources into the area to look at the fault volume in the Gulf area and we certainly are focused on restoring those services."

Ms deGault says the company's current national fault volume is between four and six times higher than what it usually is at this time of year. She says this summer has been particularly bad for Telstra and that needs to be taken into account when looking at current reported faults. "These things are out of our control as you can appreciate," she said. "What that means though is that we've had to deploy a number of resources to those hotspots in order to restore services."
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