For local farmer Bob McCormack, who has never had mobile phone reception on his farm, the idea that sharks will now have access to this technology before him is ludicrous.
The government recently announced a $16 million high-tech shark detection strategy, which will result in the creatures having better reception than many people living on farms.
Funds are being poured into the five-year program that will see drones flown above beaches and 20 listening stations built along the NSW coast to track sharks in real-time.
Winchendonvale livestock and crop farmer Bob McCormack estimated there were 300 farmers working in his area who did not have access to adequate mobile phone reception, causing extreme frustration.
"This is a very productive farming area and there are so many of us who are badly affected," he said.
According to Mr McCormack his business has felt the consequences of limited mobile reception.
"It's difficult to run a business with modern practices with the limited access to reception we have,” he said.
"It's very debilitating for my business because I'm limited to doing a lot of communication at night when I can call people from my landline.”
Another Winchendonvale farmer Ross Jelbart agrees, saying his business has also felt the ramifications of limited phone access.
“It really limits the business I can do, because I have to make sure I do it all before I get out on the farm,” he said
“If someone rings you and you don’t get back to them, then that’s lost business.
“It’s more than just an inconvenience, it’s a cost to my business and restricts the work I can do.”
While Mr Jelbart is not opposed to money being invested in the shark-detection program, suggesting the program would contribute to the tourism industry, Mr McCormack said the money would be better spent on giving those in isolated areas sufficient mobile coverage.
"You don't have to swim with the sharks, but that $16 million would easily be able to give all the farmers in this area access to mobile reception,” he said.
"It would make a significant positive difference to my business and would change everything for us.”
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