Waste station burns through night in Bayswater

The fire.        Picture: Chris Cornish
The fire.        Picture: Chris Cornish

A BLAZE that ignited on Thursday at the Transpacific Cleanaway waste transfer station in Bayswater caused an estimated $200,000 damage.

The fire at the corner of Collier Road and Tonkin Highway was reported about 5pm, with firefighters there throughout the night, extinguishing the fire by 6.45am the following day.

At the time of the fire, a Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) alert said there was no threat to the community but there was a lot of smoke in the area that could affect residents in Ashfield, Bayswater and the southern parts of Bassendean.

Mayor Sylvan Albert said the transfer station and material recovery facility had been operating on City of Bayswater land since 1993 and it was the first fire there.

“The City is not aware that there have been any issues relating to fire or safety. In the past there have been minor operational issues such as noise and odour complaints which were dealt with in accordance with legislation,” he said.

“The facility is licensed to operate by the Department of Environment and Regulations (DER).

“Their officer audits the premises on a periodic basis and the transfer station and material recovery facilities have met the conditions of approval.”

Cr Albert said the City required the operator to comply with DER requirements including fire mitigation processes and procedures.

“Since we have been notified, the City has been liaising with the management of Transpacific Cleanaway to ensure safety is guaranteed and to recommence operation at the transfer station as soon as possible,” he said.

“The City is currently assessing the event and is working with the DER and Transpacific Cleanaway to ensure measures are in place to mitigate fire at the site.”

ChemCentre and DER conducted air monitoring and analysis, with DFES reporting that the cause of the fire was accidental. The site of the fire was next to the location of the controversial proposed concrete batching plant.

Transpacific Cleanaway general manager WA David Williamson said the incident was unfortunate, however it was handled expertly by the emergency service authorities.

“I commend the Cleanaway staff who followed all proper emergency and safety procedures,” he said.

“In this instance, no one was hurt and there was only minor structural damage within the facility.

“It would be premature to comment on the cause of the fire until authorities have had time to investigate.”