A coastal community in far north Queensland remains without access to landline and mobile phone communications.
A helicopter will need to be sent to a small far north Queensland community that remains cut off from landline and mobile phone communications following Cyclone Ita.
Police radio frequencies remain the only form of communication in the indigenous township of Hope Vale, north of Cooktown, where about 300 people are staying in an evacuation centre.
Queensland Premier Campbell Newman said a damaged telecommunications tower had left the town of about 1500 people isolated, after Ita made landfall near Hope Vale on Friday night.
“What we need to do is get a helicopter up there with a Telstra crew to see whether it’s significant damage or just some minor problem with an antenna that’s blown out of alignment,” he told reporters in Cairns.
“We can only do that when it is safe for them to get in there.”
Earlier he said there were concerns the storm could have destroyed a banana plantation at Hope Vale.
“I’m very conscious of a very important banana plantation to the Aboriginal community at Hope Vale and I just really hope that hasn’t been completely wiped out,” Mr Newman said.
More than 350 customers in Hope Vale are without power, energy supplier Ergon said.
The premier vowed small communities left isolated by the cyclone would be helped.
“We won’t forget you. We may not have heard yet that there is a problem there,” he said.
“I know it sounds a bit odd; that is the practical nature of, I’m afraid, the fog of war that occurs with these things.
“The first few hours after these cyclonic events, there’s a lot of information coming in but if there’s a community that’s got a lot of problems, we need to know.”
Queensland police’s acting assistant commissioner for the northern region, Paul Taylor, said Hope Vale had not been badly damaged, according to reports he had received.
“It’s not ideal communications,” he told reporters.