WIDE BAY: New mobile tower to fight notorious blackspots
JUST weeks after the Federal Government was accused of failing to deliver when it came to fixing the Wide Bay's mobile blackspots, a new tower has been activated in the region.
The mobile phone tower, located at Cinnabar, will improve safety for motorists travelling on the Wide Bay Highway, as well as better coverage for residents and businesses.
Wide Bay MP Llew O'Brien said as a former police officer, he knew mobile coverage could save lives in times of emergency.
Mr O'Brien said since 2016, the Mobile Black Spot Program has extended coverage to 13 new sites in Wide Bay, including Glastonbury, Kin Kin, Maryborough Biggenden Road - Gungaloon, Widgee, Woolooga, Maaroom, Pomona-Kin Kin Road, Tansey, Windera, and Yerra.
A further four sites are contracted to be active by June 30.
"As someone who has lived and worked in regional areas for many years and relied heavily on telecommunications, I understand how important adequate mobile phone reception is to Wide Bay, and am working hard to improve access wherever possible," Mr O'Brien said.
"The Mobile Black Spot Program has delivered improved reception at sites across Wide Bay, including my recent announcement of two new towers at Fraser Island that will provide coverage for the first time, boosting safety and business opportunities in one of our region's major tourism markets.
Funding was provided for the Optus tower through round two of the Liberal National Government's Mobile Black Spot Program.
Last month Labor candidate Jason Scanes said five mobile base stations had been promised but not delivered by the government.
"Promises have been made by the Morrison Government to residents in Wide Bay and not kept," he said.
But the incumbent member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien said Labor had an appalling record when it came to improving mobile phone communications in regional communities.
"The former Labor Government did nothing to improve mobile phone coverage in Wide Bay during its six years in office," Mr O'Brien said.
The blackspot areas included Poona, Boreen Point, Cootharaba Rd, the Wide Bay Highway at Cinnabar and the Wide Bay Highway at Kilkivan-Goomeri.
Planning to activation usually takes between 12 and 18 months.