DFES - Department of Fire and Emergency Services
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Media Release

Emergency Services help Perth recover from damaging storm
Tuesday 23 March 2010 – 5:00 PM

People in Perth are beginning the recovery process after yesterday’s storm caused widespread damage.


FESA State Emergency Service (SES) has received nearly 2000 calls for help and is well prepared for more possible bad weather expected this afternoon and evening.  


More than 300 SES and Bush Fire Service volunteers, plus career and volunteer Fire and Rescue Service firefighters and FESA staff have worked tirelessly assisting in the recovery with over 1200 jobs already completed.


This includes SES crews that have travelled from as far as Kalbarri, Bunbury and Manjimup.


The majority of damage is from flooding and hail with damage to roofs, windows and fallen trees on homes, cars, fences and roads.


More than 30 schools reported damage including broken windows and skylights, collapsed ceilings and flooding. There was also significant damage to a number of Perth hospitals.


FESA’s State Emergency Service has been working closely with local governments, Department of Child Protection, WA Police, Western Power, Main Roads, Water Corporation, Department of Education, Department of Health, Public Transport Authority and Telstra to minimise the impact on the community.


If your home has been badly damaged and you can’t fix it yourself call the SES on 132 500.



The Premier of Western Australia Colin Barnett announced the severity of the storm damage met the criteria to be declared an “Eligible Natural Disaster” for the purposes of the Western Australia Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (WANDRRA).


To apply for assistance or for more information contact the following agencies:

·      Individuals and families: Department for Child Protection - 1800 032 965

·      Small Business and other enquiries:  WANDRRA Administrator (08) 9323 9552, email: wandrra@fesa.wa.gov.au or visit www.fesa.wa.gov.au



If you have concerns regarding your insurance coverage contact the Insurance Council of Australia on 1300 728 228. This number is not to be used for claims.





A number of schools will remain closed tomorrow (Wednesday). For more information contact your school directly or visit www.det.wa.edu.au



Public hospitals have cancelled the majority of elective surgery today. There has also been disruption to hospital phone lines so people are asked to be patient when calling.



Western Power has restored power to more than 100,000 customers but 50,000 properties are still without power across the metropolitan area and some regional areas including Moora, Dalwalinu, Minivale, Brookton, Corrigin, Wikepin, Kojonnup and the greater Albany area.

People are reminded to stay away from fallen powerlines as they may be live and dangerous.



The Water Corporation reports a loss of pumping capacity at some wastewater and water pump stations.


If you have problems with water services contact 13 13 75.



The Department of Health is warning people to avoid contact with water in Perth rivers and at beaches near stormwater outlets, due to contaminants being washed into these waters after yesterday’s storm. 


Parts of the Swan, Canning and Southern Rivers are experiencing heavy inflows of contaminated stormwater, including a number of sewage overflows.


Recreational activities such as swimming, wading, fishing and canoeing should be avoided in these waterways for at least a week.




Mounts Bay Road city bound between Winthrop Avenue and Spring Street is open to traffic although the left lane remains closed. 


Main Roads advises that more than 60 traffic lights are out but Police are in attendance at approximately half of these sites.


Please do not ring 138 138 to report faults with traffic signals. All faults with traffic signals are being identified through Main Roads internal alarm systems.


Motorists should drive with caution and expect delays until normal traffic conditions are restored.



·                     People needing SES assistance can call 132 500.

·                     In a life threatening situation call 000.

·                     For the latest weather information visit www.bom.gov.au or call 1300 659 210.

·                    For information about road conditions contact Main Roads WA on 138 138 or visit www.mainroads.wa.gov.au.


To speak to a FESA staff member this afternoon call 9323 9823.



Media Contact: Media and Public Affairs, 9225 5955.


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