Member for Fremantle Simone McGurk drew a media crowd at noon today when all TV stations turned up to report about the accident at the railway bridge which was hit by a 14,000 ton vessel during last night’s storm.
As a consequence of it there are no trains between Fremantle and North Fremantle for possibly up to a week, according to a PTA spokesman.
Engineers were inspecting the damage from a pilot vessel while McGurk gave media interviews in which she stressed that an 2004 expert’s report had stated that the bridges are an unacceptable risk and in danger of collapsing should they get hit by a ship.
McGurk said the accident could have been a disaster and that early warning systems need to be installed so that trains get stopped immediately if there is interference with the bridge. This is one of the major routes to our State’s major port.
One has to wonder also about the stevedoring companies not suspending work last night when a severe storm warning had been issued by the weather bureau at midday. Will the MUA be happy that workers’ lives were put at risk so that the unloading of cargo would not be delayed? What if vehicles had been on the ramp of the RoRo vessel when it broke its moorings. Cars and people could have ended up in the water. The Harbour Master’s claim on ABC radio that the wind gust game unexpected seems uninformed at best.
I received this comment from Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt on the Traffic Bridge debacle:
Roel, I notice that there is an”assumption a new bridge would be built in the next 10 to 15 years” but given they now plan to spend around $ 20 million just fixing the old one I fear that is no longer the case.
An investment in a new combination road/rail bridge would have not only safety benefits but also enables double stacked freight trains and more trains to run during the day and as a result more freight on to rail. It’d be a great investment.
This photo somehow shows the essence of Fremantle; the heritage A and B sheds with the modern-and future heritage-Maritime Museum, the Indian Ocean, Swan river, and a young lady on a bike. All that around sunset pretty much sums up Freo’s lifestyle.
The uniqueness of place, which makes it so attractive to visitors and locals alike should never be underestimated. The brand Fremantle is a very strong one that needs to be nurtured, and can still be improved. I strongly believe that Freo has a very promising future ahead if we all promote the brand, instead of talking our city down.
It is hard to stay inside when it is such a perfect day. Stunning blue sky, the sun blazing and 20 degrees, so what better way to spend part of the morning than wandering along the shore of the Swan River at North Fremantle. I am planning to go back there soon and shoot more streetscapes and take photos of some of the lovely buildings they got up that way.
I sincerely hope that North Freo will remain with the City of Fremantle when the new council boundaries are announced by State Government in late July. Fingers crossed!
Someone’s pile of rubble is someone else’s art installation, so when I drove by the East Fremantle jetty today and discovered all these big chunks of wood and lots of barnacles pulled out of the Swan River, I had to prove that there is beauty in the ordinary.
Getting up at 4.30 a.m. means that it is going to be a very long day for me, so I went for a walk along the Swan river just out of Fremantle along the Melville foreshore.
People love their dogs, hey! There were hundreds of them walking their pooches of all sizes and temperaments, but I was more interested in the rising sun and clouds.
The City of Fremantle is looking for interested people to run a cafe at Cantonment Hill in the old Signal Station. The area has huge potential with its great views over Fremantle harbour , the Swan River and the city, so go and check it out. The former Navy building there would be a great arts and/or community venue.
Is there a time line for the development of the area, COF? It seems to be very slow, with workshops conducted well over a year ago.
Five new signs have gone up along Bathers Beach and Arthur Head to tell visitors to Fremantle about the Nyoongar history. The Manjarree Trial runs from the old jetty to the Round House.
The project is part of the Noongar Coastal Trial and was done by the City’s Aboriginal liaison officer Brendan Moore. It was sponsored by Perthregionnrm, formerly known as the Swan Catchment Council.
The Manjarree Trial will enhance the Aboriginal tourism experience in Fremantle and will also be great for school groups who visit Fremantle.