Fay Craigie died on January 30, days after she was found face-down on the floor of her Prosperine property.
Fay Craigie died on January 30, days after she was found face-down on the floor of her Prosperine property. Contributed

Seniors concerned after woman dies following 000 failure

SENIOR citizens have shared their concerns following a breakdown of 000 emergency phone numbers and Telstra-connected home alert services during the Australia Day long weekend.

Mackay Senior Citizens Club secretary Teresa Zammit said she was "very concerned" to read of 75-year-old Fay Craigie's death on January 30.

The death came three days after she was found unconscious and covered in blood and bruises on the floor of her Proserpine home with an activated home alert button flashing "cancelled" beside her.

Ms Zammit said a similar device was installed in her elderly aunt's home and her family relied on the device to contact emergency services when they weren't around.

"You put those things in place for some peace of mind," she said.

"It's really concerning that it failed to work."

Quite a few members of the senior citizens club had home alert buttons, Ms Zammit said.

"They may be elderly but they don't want to give up their total independence," she said.

"The home alert buttons are the difference between these people getting to live alone or going into a facility.

"They're essential for frail elderly people living alone. It's the only peace of mind their family has."

Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen, who was unable to deliver a planned speech requesting a formal investigation into the telecommunications breakdown in parliament on Wednesday, said home alert devices were widely used across the region and should run on a back-up system if phone lines went down.

Mr Christensen said he delivered letters to the Ministers for Communication and Emergency Management yesterday, formally requesting an investigation.

He said he would meet with Telstra on February 19 and had a "long list of questions" for the company.


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