Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Repair Man

I am in a bit of a quandry today, b/c while I want to keep going sequentially, I've just reported Telstra to the Ombudsman and had them respond by cutting off my account, and telling me it will take a week before someone will even try to fix it. I also posted this blog link on a Facebook page ( there's a ton called 'I hate Telstra or similar, this is the biggest one ) and had a Telstra employee tell me that he assumes their service has improved since the 1990s, when this blog starts. No, I'm afraid not. It just gets worse. I am going to stick to the sequential format, and hopefully I'll have an outcome on this latest debacle by the time I post about it.

We moved in to our current home about 6 years ago, I believe. After about 3 years, we had a major rain storm, and then our phone started to play up. It sounded like it was under water, funny enough. So, we called for a technician. We had a broken phone for a fair time, then one Sunday, I looked out of my window and saw a Telstra truck. I figured he'd come and knock on the door soon enough, so I kept doing what I was doing. When I next looked, he was gone, and the entrance to my garage was blocked by a hole in the ground ( not a massive chasm, but a hole, nonetheless ). I went inside and grabbed my phone to call and complain, and it was now not working at all. It started to work again, the next day, and it was fixed from there.

I contacted Telstra to complain that their service staff come on to my property, dig a hole, leave it, break my phone altogether for a time, and don't even speak to me. A few weeks later, I proceeded to complain that there was still a hole in my yard, and that we could not use our garage.

They responded to tell me that an investigation had revealed that the line was broken because I'd been digging around it, which meant I was liable to pay for the repair. My response was two fold:

1 - so the person I complained about is assumed to be totally honest in making a counter accusation against me ? ( this is also the issue I'm currently facing with lying staff in Telstra stores )

2 - I've never dug anything up anywhere near my shed.

This went back and forth for a time. I pointed out that I am not a cripple, I am quite capable of filling in the hole in my yard, but that I didn't, precisely because I know how Telstra operates, and if I clean up after them, they'll use it to blame me for interfering with the lines. They did not care, they kept sending bills.

In the end, I realised that when we moved in, the settlement was held up as the previous owner had never got council approval for the shed, and he'd been made to come out and dig up the footings so they could be inspected. This happened while I did not own the shed, or the house, and I did not do it. I wrote and made this clear, and got back a letter telling me that Telstra did not absolve me of blame, or accept any blame, but would not be pursuing the bill. In any case, I'm not sure how digging done before we bought the house, broke the lines 3 years later.

The guy came back shortly after and filled in the hole. He did not let us know he was here, I just found the hole filled.

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