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Tuesday, 5 November 1985
Page: 1602

(Question No. 523)

Senator Watson asked the Minister representing the Minister for Communications, upon notice, on 10 September 1985:

1. Why did the central Launceston telephone exchange fail twice during one week in August 1985 and in both instances for extended periods of time.

2. What measures have been taken to prevent the reoccurrence of these incidents and thus allay the concern of the Launceston community.

Senator Walsh —The Minister for Communications has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question, based on advice from the Australian Telecommunications Commission:

1. The first failure was due to a fault in one of two Central Store Multiplexor units at the exchange. The complex nature of the fault required intensive investigation on both state and national levels before the cause could be identified. The second failure occurred as a result of severe overloading of the remaining multiplexor while the faulty unit was being repaired.

2. A comprehensive technical investigation into all circumstances of the faults was initiated by Telecom and a third multiplexor unit has been installed to provide additional security for the network.