Seventy-five emergency services personnel have now been deployed to Western Australia in support of the state’s Cyclone Seroja response and recovery effort.
The category three cyclone hit near the town of Kalbarri on north of Geraldton on the WA coast on Sunday 11 April 2021 with wind gusts of 170 kilometres per hour, damaging more than 1000 buildings across the region, destroying close to 50 homes, and knocking down power lines and fences.
Support from Victoria was requested through the National Resource Sharing Centre. Four deployments have already left Victoria – one on Tuesday 13 April, Sunday 18 April, Tuesday 20 April and Wednesday 21 April.
Today’s five-day deployment from Melbourne included 22 VICSES personnel. Over the coming days, VICSES team members from the Malvern, Ballarat, Leongatha, Wodonga, Chiltern, Nillumbik, Greater Dandenong, Essendon, San Remo, Seymour, Kinglake, Gisborne, Marong, Echuca, Bendigo and Whittlesea units will assist in the storm damage response, roof and chainsaw operations and with other resourcing requirements.
As part of Victoria’s multiagency approach, Country Fire Authority (CFA), Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) and Emergency Management Victoria (EMV) personnel are also assisting across the region.
Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp said the sector-wide approach will continue to support our counterparts in WA for as long as required.
“This event is far from over for communities around Kalbarri. The area impacted by this devastating cyclone is enormous. Emergency services crews from around Australia and the Australian Defence Force are also assisting. Many communities are still without electricity,” said Commissioner Crisp.
“I’d like to thank our volunteers, their families and employers who are supporting them in this effort,” added Commissioner Crisp.
VICSES Chief Officer Operations, Tim Wiebusch, said VICSES is proud to help communities from across the country.
“The commitment is significant across a wide area of impact with SES members assisting with a range of storm response operations, from roofing to chainsaw work,” said Chief Officer Operations Wiebusch.