Independent Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan AO, has called on people living in mobile phone black spot areas in Indi to check
www.communications.gov.au/mobile_services/mobile_black_spot_programme/map to ensure the information is correct.
The Department of Communications can make additions or corrections to the records before the database is closed on October 15, 2014, and can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or phoning 1800 113 486 to report any concerns.
“People should also inform their local council if their black spot has not been recorded,” Ms McGowan.
Ms McGowan thanked the Indi Telecommunications Action Group and residents for nominating more than 270 black spot locations for inclusion in the Federal Government’s database of mobile phone black spots. The Department of Communications released its database this week as part of the $100m Commonwealth Mobile Black Spot Programme.
“Providing this information to Government is an important step in measuring the extent of the problem in Indi,” Ms McGowan said.
“During the election campaign it was clear that inadequate mobile coverage is a significant issue for people living in Indi. Action to solve the problem of mobile coverage in regional Australia requires a collaborative approach.”
She has been working with the Indi Telecommunications Action Group to raise awareness about the need for substantial investment in mobile services in Indi. The group has engaged a consultant to develop a report on Indi mobile phone coverage needs, and to provide councils with support material for contributing to the Mobile Black Spot Programme.
On 14 August 2014 Cathy convened a meeting with representatives from Telstra, Optus, Vodafone, the Department of Communications and the Indi Telecommunications Action Group, to discuss the Programme and how Indi could maximise potential funding flowing to the area.
Ms McGowan also welcomes the Victorian Government’s efforts to improve mobile phone coverage in Victoria, particularly in response to the risk posed by bush fires. “Many parts of Indi are at high risk of bushfire, so reliable and wide-reaching mobile services for residents and tourists are essential,” she said.
The Indi Telecommunications Action Group will be writing to candidates in the upcoming Victorian State election in the seats of Murray Valley, Benambra, Eildon and Euroa, as well as the head offices of the Victorian Labor and Greens parties, to ask them what their contribution will be to improving mobile phone coverage in regional Victoria.
The selection of three local government shires/cities to be given improvements to their mobile network facilities falls far short of what is required.
Farmers have great safety needs for good reception if an accident occurs but what about all of those who are living in fire prone areas. A lack of network means that they will never receive bushfire warnings even if they have the CFA app on their phones.
It appears to me, that your assurances were no more than electoral platitudes.