Telstra technicians have restored all 3G and 4G mobile services to south-west Victoria, but there is still no definite indication of when landlines will be back in action.
Repair crews have been working on a non-stop roster using portable exchanges and satellite bases brought in from other centres to progressively get services back following a fire early Thursday morning which crippled the main Warrnambool exchange.
About 60,000 landlines, 15,000 internet connections and more than 80 mobile phone towers went blank, plunging the region into chaos.
Telstra’s regional manager Bill Mundy said this morning all 3G and 4G mobile voice and data services had been restored and pay phone boxes reconnected.
Phone connections to hospitals and some school have also been restored along with data connections to some key businesses.
However, police stations are still relying on temporary mobile numbers for general inquiries.
Emergency calls need to go through 000.Mr Mundy said the cause of the fire and the full extent of damage were yet to be ascertained.
He said there were 10,000 PSTN connections through the Warrnambool exchange.
“If we can get switching equipment up and running we may not have to do the manual work in joining all the connections,” he said.
Meanwhile, some remote communities could have their landlines back earlier through re-routing connections via the Ballarat exchange.