Residents raise concerns about potential West Perth fire station site

Monica Wood, Marie Giorgi, Adrian and Jean Ward, and Jess Black, are among resident concerned about the proposed station.
Residents raise concerns about potential West Perth fire station site
Residents raise concerns about potential West Perth fire station site
Monica Wood, Marie Giorgi, Adrian and Jean Ward, and Jess Black, are among resident concerned about the proposed station.

A PROPOSED new fire station on an old burnt factory site has ignited residents’ fears about noise, pollution, loss of privacy and lack of State Government transparency.

Last August, the State Government said increased traffic congestion and the need for faster fire response times meant a station was needed on the Carr Street, West Perth site, which was destroyed by fire in 2012 and initially zoned for a six-storey 120-apartment complex.

The site was cleared for asbestos after the fire, but fibrous pipes could still be seen this week.

At a public forum attended by about 20 residents on Monday, Carr Street Action Group joint-organiser Sarah Zvaunissaid there “had not been a lot of disclosure” and the group had “had to dig to get any”.

Residents also expressed concerns about potential noise created by firefighter training, ventilation fans and sirens.

“But I’d rather have someone getting to my house on time if it was on fire, instead of 120 more apartments in a city that’s already got too many,” resident Ant Ulijn said.

The seriousness of the residents’ concerns prompted Emergency Services Minister Joe Francis, FESA Commissioner Wayne Gregson and East Perth fire station district officer David Young to attend the forum.

“We need a new station on the north west of Perth, near the freeway, so we can have response times at an acceptable standard,” Mr Francis said, before saying the station had to go ahead or “waste” millions of dollars spent on planning and considering other sites.

Mr Gregson said he would consider all the residents’ issues, including a buffer zone, and suggested lights and sirens could be turned on up to 100m from the station.

He also said moving the station elsewhere, such as Dog Swamp, would affect response times.

Medium-density housing would neighbour the station, the plans of which currently lacked a buffer zone, included an 8m training tower residents claimed would intrud on privacy, and would potentially store chemicals and fuel, which the residents claimed required an Environmental Protection Authority study.