The West

Man dead amid storm chaos
The clean-up on Riverside Drive in the city this morning. Picture: Lee Griffith/The West Australian

UPDATE 3pm: A 48-year-old man has died in the State's South West this morning after a 15-metre tall tree crashed onto a caravan.

A Department of Fire and Emergency Services spokesman said volunteer firefighters were called to the Lake Navarino Forest Resort about 3am.

They worked to cut away the tree from the caravan in an effort to gain access to the man, but he died as a result of his injuries.

The spokesman said a rescue helicopter was also sent to the scene, near Waroona about 110km south of Perth, but later recalled.

The manager of the Waroona resort told ABC Radio this morning the tragedy was "a freak accident"

He said the victim had been asleep at the time.

The storm continued to caused havoc across the metropolitan area and South West overnight. Emergency service workers are battling to restore power and repair storm damage ahead of another front.

How was the weather in your area? Email us your pictures or MMS 0402 228 221. |

The State Emergency Service has responded to more than 220 calls for help from the metropolitan area and the South West to midnight and workers are bracing for more calls this morning as the city wakes.

The worst hit areas were Perth CBD, Wanneroo, Stirling, Rockingham, Mandurah and Cockburn.

Four men had to be rescued from rough seas off Rottnest early this morning after attempting to drive their boat back to the mainland.

Water Police supervisor Lou Hynd said the men were rescued by Rottnest Rangers and local police.

"They got about 500m past Phillip Rock when they realised they were in trouble," he said. "It was an absolutely ridiculous decision ... it might have been a lot worse if they'd gotten any further."

A police spokeswoman said Sea Rescue Fremantle received a distress call around 7am from a small vessell in 5.5m swells.

"The 21 year old Vessel skipper said he wanted to get home to Perth and thought there was a calm period to venture out, when about 2km from shore the engine stalled and would not start," she said.

The police spokeswoman said no one was injured and the boat escaped significant damage.

Rottnest Island copped some of the highest winds in the state overnight, with gusts of 117kmh reported.

Mr Hynd said a number of boats had broken their moorings on the Swan and Canning Rivers and at Mangles Bay in Rockingham.

The eastern suburbs remain the hardest hit by blackouts, with about 7500 houses still without power as of 8am. More than 50,000 were without power at the height of the storm.

Orelia, St James, Bassendean and Belmont are the worst hit areas.

Western Power crews are attempting to repair more than 500 faults across the metro area, with live power lines reported down in Nedlands, North Perth and White Gum Valley. There were more than 200 reports of fallen wires, and Western Power crews continue to prioritise these incidents in the interest of public safety.

The utility reports this morning that repair crews battled wind gusts of up to 117km/h as they worked to restore faults and hazards.

With strong winds still buffeting the South West of WA, Western Power is reminding people to stay away from any fallen powerlines and report them by calling 13 13 51.

A wind gusts to 106km/h was recorded at Cape Leeuwin at 8.47am, a gust to 91km/h was recorded at Esperance at 12.00pm and gust to 89 km/h was recorded at Jacup at 11.30am.

The Weather Bureau warns residents in a line from Mandurah to Katanning to Israelite Bay to take action and stay safe with more bad weather to come. The bad weather will continue to move south of a line from Cape Leeuwin to Katanning to Israelite Bay by later this morning.

This includes people in, near and between Mandurah, Bunbury, Busselton, Margaret River, Bridgetown, Katanning, Albany and Esperance and surrounding areas.

"This is unusual weather that could cause major damage to homes and make travel very dangerous," the Bureau says.

Major outages, top 10 suburbs. Source: Western Power
The West Australian

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