Sharon Bird, Ryan Park and Paul Scully called on the State and Federal Liberals to stop talking about themselves and start working productively together to fix the mobile phone reception problems on the South Coast Line.

A mobile basestation in Coalcliff that was approved for funding under Round 1 of the Australian Government’s Mobile Black Spot Programme in June 2015.

We understand that the proposed basestation has not been built due to indecision or refusal from NSW State Rail.

The MPs recently wrote to Minister Constance seeking advice as to why this project has not progressed.

With submissions for Round 4 of the Mobile Black Spot Programme closing mid next week, these questions now demand urgent answers.

Currently, commuters on the South Coast Line between Thirroul and Helensburgh have limited mobile reception.  The lack of coverage is particularly inconvenient, is raised regularly as an additional frustration of passenger train services on the South Coast Line and impacts on commuters ability to work during their long commute to and from Sydney each day.

This is an important economic corridor for the Illawarra region and the mobile basestation was approved to improve coverage on the line.

Comments attributable to Sharon Bird MP

“It has now been over three years and the Liberals have failed to get this program moving.

“It is hard enough for local residents who travel in excess of four hours a day to get to work in Sydney – the poor mobile reception makes it next to impossible to do work or communicate with family during the long hours they spend on the train.”

Comments attributable to Ryan Park MP

“Local commuters need to be able to keep in contact with family and friends especially when they are already away from home for long periods of time just to get to and from work each day.

“For many locals these black spots mean they can’t get work done whilst they are on the train and that means they are forced to do it when they get home.”

Comments attributable to Paul Scully MP 

“After overcrowded afternoon services, intermittent mobile phone reception on the South Coast Line is the issue that most commuters are frustrated by.

“The new tower is funded so there is no excuse why everyone involved cannot just sit down and work out where it should go and when it can be installed – we would be happy to get everyone around the table to sort out a solution if that what it would take to get the problem solved.”