Perth storms: residents urged to secure fences, properties

Perth storms: residents urged to secure fences, properties

WITH a forecast of a possible storm for Saturday, Perth residents are being urged to make sure their fences and properties are secure.

Saturday’s forecast includes the chance of damaging winds and hail.

Launching Western Power’s winter safety campaign in Jandakot, Energy Minister Mike Nahan said householders needed to make sure their trees were pruned.

“More than 60 per cent of electricity outages during a storm are caused by tree branches hitting powerlines and debris being blown into the electricity grid, and a significant number of these outages can be avoided,” Dr Nahan said.

“Western Power is busy preparing for the winter weather by trimming trees on public land, but I’d like to remind people that trees and shrubs on private land are their responsibility.

RAC Insurance Product and Underwriting Senior Manager Brad Warren said damaged fences were a big problem in winter.

“In the last three winters, fence damage has contributed to 42 per cent of storm damage claims in May through to July,” Mr Warren said.

“Winter storms can damage the structural integrity of your fences and gates.

“High winds, heavy rains, flash floods and hail can cause damage to your home and your property, and if left unchecked this damage can lead to further, more expensive issues.

“If you notice any rot or rust on the posts it could be time to replace your fencing, and if so it’s best to opt for aluminium or stainless steel fencing as they are rust-proof and more durable.”

Mr Warren said the best practice is to give your property a thorough check – before the rain starts to fall.

“Another way to avoid storm damage is to check for cracks and breaks that can occur during a storm and replace any damaged slats,” he said.

“Damaged or rusting screws and hinges are another issue.

“Misalignments from dropped screws and hinges can affect the integrity of your fence or gates and their functionality.

“When replacing them make sure to find stainless steel screws and hinges to prevent similar problems in the future.”