Stories of poor telecommunication services

Sean | Lost business opportunities and productivity

“There is nothing more frustrating than not having the ability to make a call or do business in business hours and have to drive somewhere to make the call and leave what you were doing to do that”

Sean and his brother farm in Nhill. Every day, poor communication jeopardises their safety, wastes their time while they search for reception, adds unnecessary stress, and costs them business productivity. Harvest is a particularly stressful time when long hours and late nights are coupled with the daily struggle of not being able to make or receive calls essential business calls, such as instructions to contractors hoping to drop off or pick up product.

The landline has broken down 17 times over the past couple months, leaving the very limited mobile service as the only option. The family have been forced to buy expensive repeaters and boosters for the house phone and mobiles to get decent phone reception and internet. And when the power goes down, which is a regular occurrence, the repeaters and boosters are rendered useless. Sean reflects that the boosters are just another cost to receive basic service that would be taken for granted in town.

Matthew | Safety risk on the farm

Matthew lives a mere 25 km north of Bendigo, where he farms livestock. Matthew often has issues making simple phone calls due to the almost non-existent reception on the southern most parts of his family.  When Matthew drives into Bendigo, it’s common for his phone to start beeping constantly as he enters good reception, making it clear the volume of missed phone calls and messages while on the farm.

While there is a tower at Dingee that provides good reception to the northern paddocks, the reception at the homes, workshop and sheds is so poor that the family either fail to receive calls or experience unpredictable drop outs. This presents a clear safety risk for Matthew and his family if they ever needed emergency assistance in the southern section of the farm.

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