Saturday, August 22, 2015
Mobile phone mast targeted by arsonists - customers left 'isolated' for six days
ARSONISTS set fire to a communications mast in west Dorset - leaving mobile phone customers 'isolated' for six days.
Firefighters and police officers were called to the mast at Lyme Regis Golf Club, Timber Hill last weekend and are investigating the incident as an 'arson attack'.
PC Richard Winward from Lyme Regis police, said: "Someone set fire to the mast at the golf club.
"This affected TV and various phone company's signals. The mast at the Charmouth Road car park in Lyme was also attacked, but unsuccessfully.
"Interestingly, another one was apparently attacked in the Sherborne area, and there have, I am told, been several attacked in the Avon and Somerset force area."
Firefighters from Lyme Regis fire station extinguished the blaze.
A Dorset Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson, said: "An antenna mast located within the car park was found to be on fire.
"A crew from Lyme Regis fire station attended and put out the fire using a dry powder extinguisher. Dorset Police attended he scene as the fire was believed to be a possible arson."
Police are continuing to investigate the incident and have urged witnesses to come forward.
A Dorset Police spokesperson, said: "Police were called by Dorset Fire and Rescue Service to reports of an arson attack on mobile phone masts near to Lyme Regis Golf Club.
"Detectives are currently investigating the incident. Anyone with information regarding this incident should contact Dorset Police on 101, quoting incident number 3:20."
The attack wiped out mobile phone coverage for O2 customers in the coastal town.
Becca Overton said: "Apparently somebody was upset with their provider so they decided to set fire to the mast - which is obviously ridiculous and very inconsiderate to everyone else in the town who needs their phone.
"It makes you feel completely isolated. We have a landline, but we use mobiles more because more people have our mobile number.
"They said they cannot guarantee a fault free service and so couldn't give me a refund or any compensation.
"On O2, we can't get 3G in Lyme Regis, but every other phone company provides it. People keep asking them for when it's going to happen, but I have to go to Bridport to get a 3G signal -and I'm paying for a 4G phone."
The signal was restored on Friday after the site was made safe for engineers to carry out repair work.
A spokesperson from O2, said: "As a result of an arson attack, we needed to replace damaged cabling to our mast.
"Engineers worked as quickly as they could after the site was declared safe and our service was restored on Friday afternoon."