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Super storm strikes local residents

Breanna Inferrera

WHILE some might say the impact of WA’s super storm wasn’t so ‘super’ to them, there’s no doubt other residents across the Echo News readership were hit hard by the wild weather.

The remnants of ex-tropical cyclone Mangga combined with a cold front to the south brought heavy rain, gusty winds, and dangerous surf and storm tides over the weekend and earlier this week.

In an update from Western Power at 1.15pm on Sunday, May 24, around 18,000 properties in WA had been impacted by outages, with some of the heaviest hit suburbs in the metropolitan area including Gidgegannup in the City of Swan, and Mount Helena, Bailup and Sawyers Valley in the Shire of Mundaring.

An update at 5.30pm later that day saw that figure soar to 50,000, while an update at 6.30am the following day revealed 62,000 customers had been affected at the storm’s peak.

It was reported power had been restored to almost all customers in an update at 4.30pm on Tuesday, May 26.

According to the Bureau of Meteorology, the strongest gust of wind recorded in WA on May 24 was in Gooseberry Hill just after 3.30pm, with winds hitting 117km per hour.

Forrestfield resident Elizabeth Raine and her partner were just some local residents impacted by the storm, with their Holden Barina getting smashed by a fallen tree.

Ms Raine said her neighbour’s car – bought just last week – was also damaged.

“It’s just something that happened I guess, it’s annoying but there’s nothing you can do about it and at least no one was injured,” she said.

“We called the SES and they said they were prioritising house damage first which is completely fair enough.

“We then rang triple zero, we were a bit worried because the tree did actually hit the power lines on the way down and they told us to call the City.

“The SES did eventually rock up, but the City had already organised a company to clean everything up.”

Since the onset of the storm, Kalamunda State Emergency Service (SES) responded to 15 callouts for assistance across the City of Kalamunda.

“There was some minor roof damage like whirlybirds or sky lights,” local manager Warwick Martindale said.

“But we had two or three big jobs of trees on houses, one which had half of the roof missing in Carmel.”

On a more positive note, Mr Martindale said over the past few years the Kalamunda SES has seen an increase in home-owners preparedness.

“The weekend was a high number of callouts with some significant sized trees, but over the last few years we’ve attended less of the really insignificant jobs like blocked gutters,” he said.

“The message is don’t become complacent and keep up that good work.”

He expressed his thanks to the Kalamunda SES crew.

“I’ve had in excess of 30 volunteers involved in this work,” he said.

“Some crews put in a constant 10-hour shift right into the early hours of the morning.

“If there’s an opportunity to thank them and highlight to the community the effort that has been put in that would be most appreciated.”

About The Editorial Team

Echo News gives readers an alternative to other media outlets in WA and enjoys a very high rate of readership in its distribution area. Our Echo News team are a small group of devoted individuals who work hard to give the local community an easy to read, yet intelligent mix of local community stories.

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