Calgary company caught in ‘dead zone’ calls for action from Telus

Click to play video: 'Calgary company caught in so-called cellphone ‘dead zone’ calls for action from Telus'
Calgary company caught in so-called cellphone ‘dead zone’ calls for action from Telus
WATCH: A Calgary company which has faced cellphone call dropouts -- and often times no service -- is calling on Telus for an immediate fix. Tomasia DaSilva reports – Nov 28, 2022

A Calgary company has joined the call for better cellphone service after months of no service and repeated dropped calls.

C Mac Mechanical Ltd. told Global News that its cellphone service with Telus has been spotty since it moved into its current location 15 years ago, but it’s been virtually non-existent since September.

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“It’s not just one phone call that drops per day,” owner Glen MacFarlane said. “It’s absolutely every single phone call.”

“I can’t take a phone call so I have to stop the phone call. I then have to get on the landline and then call the contractor or whomever back via the landline. It just drives me nuts.”

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Click to play video: 'Calgary communities ask for help following months of ‘dropped calls’'
Calgary communities ask for help following months of ‘dropped calls’

MacFarlane and C Mac’s director of operations Trista Doherty have reached out to the telecommunications giant multiple times. They both told Global News they’ve been advised the business is located in a so-called “grey” or “dead” zone, and there is little that Telus can do about it.

“They’re (Telus) aware that there’s an issue but there’s nothing they can do,” Doherty said. “It’s not a quick fix, so basically we’re S.O.L.”

Calgary company in so-called “dead” zone calls for cell fix. Tomasia DaSilva

The plumbing and HVAC company has taken it upon itself to try and fix the issue, including installing a wireless booster that cost approximately $4,000.

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“We outsourced this booster, which we paid for, so that wasn’t cheap.” Doherty said. “We also have towers on the roof of our building directed towards the towers to try and get better service.”

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MacFarlane said the enhancements worked for a while, but not for long. He added that was unacceptable considering what he’s paying for the service.

“I pay my Telus bill every single month and it’s not cheap because it’s business,” he pointed out.

“So I pay a premium for a business plan and I pay my monthly bill or they’re going to cut me off — yet I get inferior service.”

Doherty added there has been another cost to this whole ordeal: her time.

“Multiple days two hours on hold tying to get ahold of Telus. Being told there’s no solution and just a lot of waiting and a lot of time.”

Trista Doherty trying to get through to Telus. Tomasia DaSilva

Global News reached out to Telus with C Mac’s concerns. A spokesperson said it has since sent a technical crew out and is investigating.

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Telus said it would work with the company in the coming days to analyze the exact cause of the challenges.

Click to play video: 'More Albertans call for a fix of spotty cellphone service'
More Albertans call for a fix of spotty cellphone service


Doherty said Telus had compensated the company several hundreds of dollars since the issue began, but added it’s not nearly enough to pay for the costs C Mac has incurred so far.

She added while it’s frustrating for everyone, employees have been getting pretty good at finding creative ways to get by.

“If we find a good spot, we fight over it. We’ll stand on an air conditioner or on a furnace — we do what we can to get the best service we can.”

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