Gunalda couple signal for EFTPOS help
IT IS not how Gunalda small business owners Carl Foster and partner Fran Ashton like to trade - waving EFTPOS machines out of windows in the hunt for an elusive signal.
But after nearly two weeks of problems with Telstra mobile and landline service, the owners of Curiocity Coffee are starting to wring their hands in frustration.
Everyday business tasks like operating a wireless EFTPOS machine are becoming mission impossible with patchy on-and-off-again service.
Mr Foster said the technological difficulties affected a number of Gunalda businesses, including those in nearby towns of Curra and Tiaro.
The businessman, who has operated his cosy countryside coffee shop for 14 months, said he had seen some business owners waving wireless EFTPOS machines helplessly in a hunt for reception.
"I know of many businesses having the same troubles," Mr Foster said.
"The internet is patchy, our business equipment sometimes is offline completely and I know one person who lost a work contract because they could not get in contact with a customer."
The reception issues have come at a bad time for businesses, though Mr Foster was quick to point out there was never a good time to not receive something for which you pay.
"The economy is bad at the moment and this is affecting the ability to trade," he said.
"It is straining already stretched financial resources."
For residents, the trouble is just as irritating.
Text messages are being received days later while some of Mr Foster's customers worry about being unable to phone 000 in the event of an emergency.
The Gympie Times contacted a Telstra online representative on Thursday about the Gunalda region's reception woes and was told the telecommunication company was aware of service difficulties.
A spokeswoman said there was a known service disruption to ADSL and phone line connections in the Gunalda area and it was expected full service would return today.
Customers having troubles were urged to contact Telstra with their account details so connections could be checked further. Additionally, Telstra provides a website allowing customers to check for known service issues. Visit http://www.servicestatus.telstra.com.