Financial help now available to those affected by Bunbury tornado

Monday, 13 May 2024 09:01

By Monique Welhan

About 100 homes were either destroyed or damaged. PIC: 9News

Financial help is now available to those whose homes were destroyed or damaged by a devastating tornado in Bunbury.

The tornado, carrying wind speeds of over 150km/h, hit the Bunbury suburb of Withers about 4pm on Friday and lasted just five minutes.

The freak weather event damaged over 100 homes, with seven deemed uninhabitable.

Commercial buildings, an apartment block, Bunbury Regional Prison as well as the South West Sports Centre, the Police and the Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) was also severely damaged.

The PCYC was destroyed in the tornado. PIC: 9News

Luckily there were no reports of any serious injuries.

The Premier's Relief Payment is now available which is designed to help affected residents pay for food, clothing, personal effects, transport and emergency accommodation.

Those whose homes were destroyed will be eligible for a $4000 payment while a $2000 payment is on offer to residents whose homes were damaged.

"This severe weather event has had a devastating impact on the Bunbury community and my thoughts are with those who have lost homes and property," Premier Roger Cook said.

"My Government will do everything it can to support those impacted during this difficult time."

A hazmat warning remains for those in an area bounded by Hudson Drive, Bussell Highway, Washington Ave, Parade Road, Westwood Street and Ocean Drive in Withers.

"There is a potential presence of asbestos within the impact area of Friday’s tornado, specifically around the Hay Park Sporting Complex and surrounding residential areas," the alert read.

"Urban Search and Rescue Rapid Damage Assessment teams are working to locate the source of any potential asbestos contamination." 

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