Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien; at the Cinnabar tower which was activated this week.
Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien; at the Cinnabar tower which was activated this week. Madeline Grace

Cinnabar, Kilkivan, Goomeri now have better phone coverage

A NEW Optus mobile phone tower was brought online at Cinnabar yesterday, ensuring motorists on the Wide Bay Highway have access to phone service in the event of an emergency.

The tower is halfway between Goomeri and Kilkivan and will also provide better coverage for residents and businesses in the area.

Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien announced the tower was up and running thanks to funding from the second round of the government's Mobile Black Spot Program.

"As a former police officer, I know that mobile phone coverage can save lives in times of emergency,” Mr O'Brien said.

"This new tower at Cinnabar means locals and people travelling on the Wide Bay Highway will be safer as a result.

"The improved mobile phone reception will better connect locals to services, and improve opportunity for local businesses.”

Mr O'Brien said since 2016, the Mobile Black Spot Program had extended coverage to 13 new sites in Wide Bay.

Another four sites are contracted to be active by June 30 this year.

"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 next two rounds of the Mobile Black Spot Program have been announced and guidelines have been released for round five.

Mr O'Brien urged people to let their mobile phone providers know of any coverage concerns so that they would consider applying for the funding.

"Round five will have a strong focus on improving coverage at important community centres in regional areas like Wide Bay, such as medical facilities, schools and economic hubs,” Mr O'Brien said.

"I urge interested communities to contact the mobile network operators and state, territory and local government authorities to let them know about any coverage issues they are experiencing.”

Mobile network operators and infrastructure providers have until July 26, 2019, to submit their applications.

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