Freo's View


Posted in city of fremantle, employment, fremantle ports, maritime, Uncategorized, Westport taskforce by freoview on February 1, 2020




Fremantle wharfies are not happy with plans for a new port at Kwinana, so the Maritime Uniion of Australia(MUA) have put a full page advertisement in the Fremantle Herald attacking our local member Minister Simone McGurk.

The MUA claims it will cost 8,000 Freo jobs, and that it would be a broken election promise by the Labor party, who stated they would keep Fremantle a working port.

It is still very premature as the final report of the Westport Taskforce has not been completed and the government has yet to make a decision, but all indications are that the first three preferred options of the taskforce are to move the port to Kwinana and leave Fremantle for cruiseships, and I too would be disappointed about that.

There is no doubt that a new port would be largely automated, so fewer jobs for wharfies, but it is probably a good idea for the MUA to sit down with the stevedore companies and state government to make sure wharfies are being retrained to whatever new jobs will become available.

I have stated it many time that I love the working port in Fremantle and the huge cranes on North Quay, and a new port will be at least 10-15 years away if and when the labor government decide yo build one near Kwinana, so I won’t be seeing it.

Roel Loopers


Posted in city of fremantle, city planning, freight, fremantle ports, maritime, traffic, Uncategorized by freoview on September 19, 2019


The protest yesterday by the MUA-Maritime Union of Australia in front of Minister Simone McGurk’s office in Fremantle made me wonder why the union is not engaged in finding solutions.

It is by now well known that Fremantle Port can easily handle many more containers and could remain a working port for another 20-25 years, but that the issues are with how freight gets to and from the port, so has the MUA offered any ideas on how to solve that?

Why does MUA’s Chris Cain not sit down with Fremantle Ports, the trucking and stevedore companies and try to find solutions so that they get the people in North Fremantle and near Leach highway on their side?

I am always skeptical about a layperson offering quick solutions, so my suggestions are merely meant to be the start of a discussion among the experts.

Why not demand, or even enforce, 24/7 freight on road, more after business hours movement, so that there is less congestion during the day time?

Why not encourage or enforce that trucks can not arrive empty to pick up containers, but also have to deliver on the same trip? That might require more computerised collaboration between trucking companies, but it would make freight by road more efficient and hence more cost efficient. A win win for all.

Trucks that can only transport one single container should be banned as it is inefficient and clogs up roads. Coming back from the dentist yesterday I was at a North Fremantle traffic light where I saw nine trucks coming through and all of them just carrying one container. That is silly.

More freight on rail is also helpful but there is an issue with noise and vibration for people in the west end of Fremantle, and the current line cannot handle double stacking, so growth is limited even when a new bridge is built.

Fremantle Port is one of the most efficient ports in Australia so the MUA members clearly know what they are doing, so they should put their considerable experience toward trying to make the freight part of the operation more efficient and less of a burden on the local community.

And one more word to Chris Cain and his threat that the Member for Fremantle will be gone at the next election. Do you really believe that Lisa-I should think before I speak-Harvey and Bill-I must have been absent when God handed out brains-Marmion will be more supportive of the MUA than the current government?

Simone McGurk is a very hard working and excellent minister who has some very challenging portfolios, such as child protection and domestic violence. She does not deserve the MUA threat.

I love the working port and hope it will remain for a very long time, but consideration must also be given to the residents in North Fremantle and along the road and rail freight corridors, so it is a much bigger issue than just jobs for wharfies.  The MUA should be pro-active in investigation which kind of new jobs a new port might have to offer and assist in retraining some of their members.

But there is no need for panic as a new port if built at Kwinana will be a very slow and long process, and Chris Cain will long have retired by then and I will be long dead.

Roel Loopers



port cranes at sunset


Wharfies at DP World stevedores in Fremantle Port will go on a 48-hour strike this Thursday. This is part of a national strike for a new enterprise bargaining agreement.

Roel Loopers



Posted in fremantle by freoview on November 22, 2013

The old cranes in Fremantle harbour, next to the Maritime Museum, are a wonderful reminder of our history and of all the hard work of the early settlers and wharfies.

I took this photo around sunset yesterday.

Roel Loopers



Posted in fremantle by freoview on January 27, 2012

Fremantle people near the Seaview Hotel are less than impressed and not happy at all about the hotel introducing a skimpy night on Wednesdays. I understand the hotel is under receivership. It was formerly part owned by Fremantle Dockers captain Mathew Pavlich.

One would have thought Fremantle had grown up and would no longer take part in the silly business of having scantily clad young women serving drinks. When Freo was still a wharfies town skimpies were a bit of good fun for the hard working blokes, but in 2012 that kind of business should be restricted to the Goldfields, if at all.

Roel Loopers


Posted in fremantle by freoview on May 2, 2011

The MUA called for a 24 hour strike at the Patricks terminal at Fremantle Ports today. Wharfies were manning the picket line playing cricket and drinking coffee early this morning.

Photo copyright Roel Loopers


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