On hold with Telstra for two months

• Ron Davidson—can’t believe it takes two months to fix a phone in the 21st century. Photo by Jeremy Dixon

• Ron Davidson—can’t believe it takes two months to fix a phone in the 21st century. Photo by Jeremy Dixon

RESIDENTS of Fremantle’s Fothergill Street—including some with life-threatening medical conditions—have been without telephone and internet services for almost two months.

Street resident and local historian Ron Davidson says it’s a “preposterous” situation.

Mr Davidson, 77, is on Telstra’s priority assistance list because of his medical condition but that’s made little difference to getting services back on.

Services were cut December 18 when an ATCO Gas worker busted the footpath two doors from Mr Davidson’s home.

A Telstra technician checked the line December 21 but because the path had already been concreted over couldn’t do any work.

Mr Davidson was told it would be fixed December 24, then January 16, January 30 and most recently February 6.

“There have been machines going up and done the street for the last seven weeks and every time I hear them, I think it’s finally getting fixed,” he told the Herald.

‘It’s preposterous—this is our modern communication company in action.

“And all these dates the line is going to get fixed just come and go without explanation.”

He says he’s rung Telstra 25 to 30 times in seven weeks trying to get answers.

“Every time I ring I’m on the phone for 30 minutes, but there is nothing at the end,” he says. “There is no-one to talk too.”

Mr Davidson says he’s spent hundreds of dollars on “adaptors” to cobble together a primitive email service.

“Meanwhile I keep ringing my service provider and get told ‘I hear what you are saying but we can do nothing because Telstra owns the external cables,” he says.

Mr Davidson’s wife Dianne, also an active historian, says she “felt cut off from the rest of the world”.

“I have a laptop but it’s completely useless at the moment,” she sighs.

“Yet here we are being charged by Telstra for services they are not providing.”

by BRENDAN FOSTER

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