Some 2degrees customers are without mobile service and are being left on hold for hours.
The mobile provider posted a message on its Facebook page on Thursday reminding customers to check its service page for network outages as Cyclone Cook approached.
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Customer left comments on the post complaining about being left on hold for hours as staff tried to fix issues with over payments, using the 2degrees app, and not having service after paying a bill.
All public Facebook messages to 2degrees have gone unanswered.
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2degrees customer Janet Viljoen lives alone and has terminal cancer. Her 2degrees cell phone is the only way she can communicate with anyone during an emergency.
Viljoen had no cell phone coverage all day Friday in Bay of Plenty during Cyclone Cook.
She said people who were concerned about her well being after the cyclone were still in the dark on Friday afternoon as she could not contact anyone.
“My cell phone is my only form of contact so this situation is untenable. I was faced with a very close emergency situation due to my breathing difficulties and not being able to use a power generated Nebuliser,” Viljoen said in a message to 2degrees.
On the 2degrees website, a ‘service status’ message said services in Ohope Beach, Tolaga Bay, Te Pohue, Waimana, and Te Puia were still down.
“We’ve already restored a number of sites and will continue to do so, particularly as power comes back on,” a 2degrees message said on the page.
It also said service in Manapouri, Southland “may be degraded”.
Viljoen acknowledged the service status in a second email to the provider but said it was “fairly well buried”.
“There is still no coverage in Ohope Beach.Yet the power in this region was restored at 11am so essentially your ‘information’ is more like ‘misinformation’.”
The mobile provider had been struggling for months to keep on top of customer service after upgrading its services in February.
Customers were offered free calls and texts as compensation, and 2degrees hired 60 temporary staff in March, to try to clear a backlog of calls that followed its troubled switch to a new customer management software system.