NBN tower topples

NBN tower topples

A deliberate act of sabotage could be to blame for a NBN tower toppling over and crashing through trees in Lanes Road, Bairnsdale on Saturday, August 18.

The large bolts holding the tower upright were neatly beside the concrete bases on which the steel structure stood.

NBN became aware the tower had fallen sometime before four o’clock.

Detective Acting Sergeant, Matt Garbutt, from East Gippsland’s Criminal Investigation Unit, told the News an initial inspection of the site by engineers had indentified “a number of anomalies” which resulted in police being called.

Detective Garbutt refused to confirm or deny whether the bolts on the tower base had been interfered with.

“Suffice to say it’s an active investigation,” he said.

A source told the News that for the structure to topple is “very unusual” as the towers are structurally sound and there were “a number of issues at the site that were concerning.” Witnesses who may have seen any suspicious activity on Saturday in the Lanes Road area are being urged to contact detectives at the Bairnsdale police station.

NBN confirmed about 390 customers with phone and internet services had been affected by the collapse of the tower in East Bairnsdale, Nungurner, Kalimna and Lake Bunga.

At the time of going to print yesterday afternoon, 305 services had been reinstalled while 84 customers still remained without. A NBN spokesperson said they were hoping to modify links with other tower sites to get the service back up and running for those customers affected, but admitted it could take up to a week to restore all services. “We encourage those with impacted services to continue speaking with their retail service providers for updates,” the spokesperson said.

Most of those affected are Telstra customers.

PICTURED: Police are investigating how the NBN tower toppled over on Saturday, August 18, smashing the perimeter fence and crashing through trees