Telstra will be upgrading its mobile base station in Lockhart River next week with additional infrastructure to bring better 4G services to the community.
The works will require a series of temporary outages or reduction in mobile coverage during daylight hours from 3-9 November.
“There’s never a good time to undertake this sort of work but once it’s completed, it will mean better mobile services for local residents,” regional general manager Rachel Cliffe said.
Telstra mobile customers may have already received text messages advising of the upcoming work.
Ms Cliffe said while crew need to work during daylight for safety, sites will only be switched off when necessary.
“Where possible we will just be switching off the parts of the tower we are working on, leaving the rest operational. While coverage and capacity will decline during this time, we want to keep the amount of time the site is off air to an absolute minimum,” she said.
Landline services, NBN internet services and mobile coverage from other providers will not be impacted. Any calls to Triple Zero from a Telstra mobile when the site is off air will automatically be diverted to any working mobile network for connection to emergency services.
“Telstra does have other mobile base stations located close by in Lockhart River which may help provide some coverage on the outskirts of town, but most of our mobile coverage for this area does come from this base station so there will be an impact,” she said.
For mobile coverage in the interim, if residents have access to a Wi-Fi signal at home or at work, Telstra encouraged residents to activate Wi-Fi calling. This is a free setting on most popular mobile phones and allows your mobile to use a Wi-Fi network to make and receive calls.
For more information on Wi-Fi calling, go to https://www.telstra.com.au/support/mobiles-devices/telstra-wifi-calling.
EFTPOS terminals using the Telstra network should not be affected as they are operated by financial institutions, not Telstra. Many EFTPOS terminals can also be connected using fixed line or Wi-Fi/NBN internet connections. Retailers should contact their bank for details on how to switch between these methods to ensure continuous service.