Update on NSW bushfires and Telstra network

Media Release, 19 October 2013

Telstra has continued to monitor the impact of the New South Wales fires on our network.

Telecommunication infrastructure in the area remains largely intact with the main issue being power outages. Telstra staff are working with the relevant authorities to gain access to these sites and are attempting to reconnect affected services. Technicians have worked overnight to restore a number of connections. The current impact is affecting approximately 400 landline services, mostly in Yellow Rock and Catherine Hill Bay where we are unable to gain safe access to our infrastructure.

In some areas the fire was so intense it may have damaged our cables connecting exchanges to homes and businesses. We will be assessing the damage as soon as access is available and additional crews are on standby to make repairs.

Affected Telstra customers can register for an assistance package by calling 13 2203. If eligible, this will provide them with free diversions of landline phones to a mobile phone and for calls made on that mobile to be charged at landline rates for a period of time. Telstra will attempt to hold all bills for affected customers until a more appropriate time. Residents in bushfire affected areas can use any Telstra payphone to make free local, national and mobile calls.

Our thoughts and thanks continue to be with everyone involved in some capacity responding to the fires, and for all those affected by the incident.