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Media Release

Community response praised in wake of TC Damien
Tuesday 11 February 2020 – 9:30 AM

​The Department of Fire and Emergency Services is praising the community response in the lead up to Tropical Cyclone Damien, with the majority of Pilbara residents taking the necessary steps to ensure their safety. 

Volunteers and DFES personnel, including an Urban Search and Rescue Taskforce are working to assess the damage caused by the cyclone. There have been about 220 requests for SES assistance, largely for roof damage, water damage and fallen trees.

Fire and Emergency Services Commissioner Darren Klemm said people must continue to exercise caution while recovery efforts were underway.

“Flooding, damaged infrastructure, debris and fallen trees are still very real risks to the community and crews are working tirelessly to clear these hazards for your safety,” Commissioner Klemm said.

“Don’t drive, swim or play in floodwaters – there could be unseen hazards under the surface.”

A number of roads, schools and national parks in the Pilbara will remain closed for a number of days.  

Commissioner Klemm said Pilbara residents played a significant role in limiting the damage by preparing early and listening to advice from emergency services. 

“Although people living in the Pilbara are familiar with cyclones, it’s encouraging to see that most people still took the necessary precautions to stay safe.”

“I also acknowledge the hard work of all emergency services personnel supporting the community at this challenging time, particularly our volunteers who have given up valuable time with their families and work to help others prepare for and recover from this event.”

While residents continue to clean up around their properties, anyone who needs assistance for urgent temporary repairs should call the State Emergency Service on 132 500.

As Ex-Tropical Cyclone Damien continues to weaken and move further south, people in the Midwest Gascoyne should be aware heavy rainfall and flooding pose a risk over the coming days. Keep up to date with the latest alerts and warnings at emergency.wa.gov.au


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