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Our response to the Wooroloo bushfire emergency

Wooroloo Bushfire Reconnection Map

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Reconstruction of the electricity network damaged by the Wooroloo fire is now complete.  We thank the community for their appreciation and understanding.  

All customers whose properties are safe to be reconnected to the network have now had their power restored.  

The bushfire affected a big part of the network with 579 poles, 47 transformers and 56 underground assets damaged or destroyed.  

In the rebuild of the network Western Power made several upgrades, including installing two stand-alone power systems (the first to go in a metropolitan area in WA), three-phase line in some parts to allow for backfeeding in the future, upgrading overhead conductors to improve system capacity and installing some LV aerial bundled conductors in high vegetation areas to add additional network resilience to external factors. 

Fees waived  

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.   

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.    

Reconstruction of the electricity network is nearing completion and we’re progressing well along the path to reconnect remaining customers. A big thanks to the community for their appreciation and understanding.  

In anticipation of being ready to restore power to the large volume (just over 200) of remaining customers, we’ll be increasing our commissioning teams in the area from 26 February. They will progressively connecting and restoring power to customers. 

  • Power has been restored to the O’Brien Road, Reserve Road and Reen Road areas, and the area bound by Dinsdale Road and Allen Street, along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; and the area east of Toodyay Road to Dinsdale Road.
  • In the Tilden Park area construction is continuing and forecast to be complete by 26 February. Once construction is complete, we will conduct quality assurance and tests before commissioning and restoring power to customers. 

Fees waived

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.

Reconnecting properties

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess if there has been any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

In all circumstances, if homes have been affected by fire, we recommend that customers have a licensed electrical contractor to check the integrity of the electrical installation in their property.

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’ the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for a private electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified by the electrician, your supply can be reconnected.

  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also our private power poles and cables page

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.    

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the advice from the Electrical Inspectors is that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on.   

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.    

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.   

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.  

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit waei.com.au 

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.  

Extended Outage Payment System 

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

More information 

Resources are available for community members below including information on staying safe, including using generators.  

Please stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network. Make The Safe Call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.  

Reconstruction of the electricity network is nearing completion and we’re progressing well along the path to reconnect remaining customers.

A big thanks to the community for their appreciation and understanding.

In anticipation of being ready to restore power to the large volume (just over 200) of remaining customers, we’ll be increasing our commissioning teams in the area from 26 February.

  • Power has been restored to the Reserve Road and Reen Road areas, and the area bound by Dinsdale Road and Allen Street.
  • Construction work is complete in the areas along O’Brien Road. Now that weather conditions from the past two days have eased, we can recommence testing before commissioning and restoring power to customers.
  • Most customers along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; and the area east of Toodyay Road to Dinsdale Road now have their power restored.
  • In the Tilden Park area construction is continuing and forecast to be complete by 26 February. Once construction is complete, we will conduct quality assurance and tests before commissioning and restoring power to customers.

Fees waived

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.

Reconnecting properties

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess if there has been any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

In all circumstances, if homes have been affected by fire, we recommend that customers have a licensed electrical contractor to check the integrity of the electrical installation in their property.

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’ the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for a private electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified by the electrician, your supply can be reconnected.

  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also our private power poles and cables page

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.    

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the advice from the Electrical Inspectors is that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on.   

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.   

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.  

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit waei.com.au 

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.  

Extended Outage Payment System 

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

More information 

Resources are available for community members below including information on staying safe, including using generators.  

Please stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network. Make The Safe Call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.  

Reconstruction of the electricity network is nearing completion and more customers have had their power restored over the weekend, with just over 200 remaining without power.   

We’re working as quickly and safely as possible, and construction work is continuing, but due to current weather and high fire danger ratings we’re unable to restore power to more homes until bushfire risk eases. 

  • Power has been restored to the Reserve Road and Reen Road areas, and the area bound by Dinsdale Rd and Allen Street.
  • Construction work is complete in the areas along O’Brien Road; along Toodyay Rd to Aspen Rd; and the area east of Toodyay Rd to Dinsdale Rd. Commissioning in these areas has commenced however is being affected by the current weather conditions. 
  • In the Tilden Park area construction is continuing and forecast to be complete by 25 February. Once construction is complete, we will conduct quality assurance and tests before commissioning and restoring power to customers. 

Fees waived  

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.   

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.    

Reconnecting properties  

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess if there has been any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.   

In all circumstances, if homes have been affected by fire, we recommend that customers have a licensed electrical contractor to check the integrity of the electrical installation in their property.  

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.   

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’ the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for a private electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified by the electrician, your supply can be reconnected.  
  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.  

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.   

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ webpage and also here on our website.

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.   

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the advice from the Electrical Inspectors is that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on.   

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.   

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.   

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit www.waei.com.au.   

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.   

Extended Outage Payment System  

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online here.

  

More information  

  • Resources are available for community members including information on staying safe and using generators - see our FAQs below.
  • Please stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network. Make The Safe Call to us on 13 13 51 (24/7) so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.   

The rebuild of the network is nearly complete with power being restored to many of the remaining customers affected by the Wooroloo bushfire. Currently 262 are without power.  

Power is now restored to the area bound by Dinsdale Rd and Allen Street. 

Reconstruction of the electricity network well underway with over 575 poles and 41 km of powerline conductor replaced in the last 11 days. 

  • Construction work is complete in the areas along Toodyay Rd to Aspen Rd; the area east of Toodyay Rd to Dinsdale Rd; and Reserve Road. Commissioning in these areas has commenced and power is being progressively restored
  • In Reen Road our rebuild is now complete with commissioning to start on 20 February.
  • In the Tilden Park area construction is continuing and forecast to be complete by 25 February.
  • Works have started in the O’Brien Road area and expected to be complete by 22 February.

Once construction is complete, Western Power conducts quality assurance and tests before commissioning and restoring power to customers. 

Fees waived 

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.  

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.   

Reconnecting properties 

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess if there has been any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.  

In all circumstances, if homes have been affected by fire, we recommend that customers have a licensed electrical contractor to check the integrity of the electrical installation in their property. 

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.  

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’ the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for a private electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified by the electrician, your supply can be reconnected. 
  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’. 

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.  

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also on our website 

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.  

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the advice from the Electrical Inspectors is that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on.  

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.  

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.  

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit www.waei.com.au 

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.  

Extended Outage Payment System 

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

More information 

Resources are available for community members below including information on staying safe, including using generators.  

Please stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network. Make The Safe Call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.  

Power is now starting to be restored to the remaining customers affected by the Wooroloo bushfire, with around 75 customers reconnected to the network.

Power is now restored to the area East of Toodyay Rd bound by Dinsdale Rd and Allen Street.

Reconstruction of the electricity network well underway with over 438 poles and 37 km of powerline conductor replaced in the last 8 days.

Construction work is complete in the areas along Toodyay Rd to Aspen Rd, and Reserve Road. Our rebuild is nearing completion in Reen Road and the area east of Toodyay Rd to Dinsdale Rd; and has commenced in the Tilden Park area. Works are commencing in the O’Brien Road area from tomorrow.

Once construction is complete, Western Power conducts quality assurance and tests before commissioning and restoring power to customers.

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice. 

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess if there has been any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

In all circumstances, if homes have been affected by fire, we recommend that customers have a licensed electrical contractor to check the integrity of the electrical installation in their property.

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’ the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for a private electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified by the electrician, your supply can be reconnected.
  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also our private power poles and cables page

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the advice from the Electrical Inspectors is that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on.

If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit www.waei.com.au.

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so. 

The Extended Outage Payment Scheme has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

More than 200 Western Power employees are on site today rebuilding the network following the Wooroloo bushfire.

Our scoping and assessment is now complete and has identified over 600 damaged assets, including 459 poles and 44 transformers.

Construction work is progressing well, with 200 poles, 20 kilometres of wire and 17 transformers replaced.

We’re attending community meetings and have been at Percy Cullen Oval in Gidgegannup this week to help customers with any questions they might have. We thank the affected community for their patience and will keep them updated as our rebuild program progresses.

With more than 250 heavy and light vehicles entering and leaving our temporary operations base in Gidgegannup daily, traffic management is in place for the safety of everyone in the area and we thank the community for their patience.

At this stage around 390 properties remain without power following the fires. Power is now available to a small number of customers in the area east of Toodyay Road bounded by Dinsdale Road and Bailup Rd, with further pockets of customers to be restored in the coming days.

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, the WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’, the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for an electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified your supply can be reconnected.
  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also our private power poles and cables page

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the Electrical Inspector advises that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on. If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit www.waei.com.au.

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local licensed electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.

Please stay eight metres away from any fallen powerlines or other damage to the network. Make the safe call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

The Extended Outage Payment Scheme has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

Our thoughts and support are with the bushfire affected community in this very challenging time, particularly to those families who have lost their homes, been displaced or have lost or injured animals.

Our scoping and assessment so far has identified over 600 damaged assets, including 466 poles and 28 transformers. Scoping is underway in the remaining area left to scope (O’Brien Road east of Walynuga National Park) and we’re planning on having this completed this week.

At this stage around 390 properties remain without power following the fires. We anticipate that power to customers in the area east of Toodyay Road bounded by Dinsdale Road and Allen Street is planned to be restored from tomorrow. Construction work is continuing in all other the areas, and while work is progressing well, with 150 poles 12 kilometres of wire and 17 transformers replaced, the rebuild will take weeks.

We have around 20-24 crews on site this week which is around 200 employees, plus all the personnel to support the crews to safely complete work as quickly as possible and restore power to customers.

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, the WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’, the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for an electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified your supply can be reconnected.
  2. If there is a tag that says `Information|Caution’, your connection can be reconnected to the network when power’s been restored. Once connected, you can flick your main switch to ‘On’.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector, please call 13 10 87 between 8.30am-5.00pm.

If you’re unsure what electrical infrastructure you’re responsible for on your property, visit the Building and Energy website’s ‘Private power poles and lines are your responsibility’ page and also on our website.

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.  

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the Electrical Inspector advises that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on. If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information on the role of WA Electrical Inspectors, please visit www.waei.com.au.

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.

We’re attending community meetings this week to help customers with any questions they might have. We thank the affected community for their patience and will keep them updated as our rebuild program progresses.

Resources are available for community members below including information on staying safe, including using generators.

Please stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network Make The Safe Call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe. 

The  Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

Our thoughts and support are with the bushfire affected community in this very challenging time, particularly to those families who have lost their homes, been displaced or have lost or injured animals.  

At this stage around 400 properties remain without power due to this devastating fire which is now under control.  We want to give a shout out to DFES, DBCA, volunteer bushfire brigades and all those who have been involved in this huge collective effort. 

Unfortunately, property owners without power at this point are unlikely to be restored until our rebuild is completed, which will take weeks not days, and they should seek alternative arrangements. 

The response and rebuild of the electricity network in the fireground area is one the biggest we’ve had to undertake as a result of bushfire. 

Our  scoping and assessment so far has identified over 600 damaged assets, including 466 poles and 28 transformers - and we haven’t assessed all areas yet. We’ve got four out of 14 fire areas left to assess and we’re planning on having this completed this week. 

We’re continuing to inspect and clear other areas of the fire area with the help of Urban Search and Rescue. Once clear, we’ll begin scoping to begin the rebuild phase in those areas.   

Construction will take several weeks with hundreds of poles and transformers needing replacing. Reconstruction is complete in the area east of Toodyay Road bounded by Bailup Road and Allen Street.    

Work has started in the areas east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Bailup Road; along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; along Reserve Road and the east end of Reen Road.  So far we’ve replaced 108 poles, five kilometres of conductor and 17 transformers. 

Please be assured we’re working as quickly and safely as possible and have mobilised additional metro and regional crews to get this work done. We’ll have around 20-24 crews on site this week which is around 200 employees, plus all the personnel to support the crews. Muddy terrain due to the heavy rain over past few days is making the restoration effort more challenging and we thank customers for their patience.  

Customers should be aware that before power can be restored to their property, the WA Electrical Inspectors need to assess any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.  

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply. 

  1. If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’, the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for an electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined on the tag have been rectified your supply can be reconnected.
  2. If there is a tag that says `Ok to connect’, your connection has been deemed safe and you can switch your power main on.  

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected, please call 13 13 51. 

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.    

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the electrical inspector advises that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on. If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified. 

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51. 

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information, please visit waei.com.au 

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so. 

We’re attending community meetings this week to help customers with any questions they might have. We thank the affected community for their patience and will keep them updated as our rebuild program progresses. 

Important links:

Resources are available for community members, including information on:

Wooroloo bushfire outage FAQs

Rebuilding the network following the Wooroloo bushfire

Our thoughts and support are with the bushfire affected community in this very challenging time, particularly to those families who have lost their homes, been displaced and have lost or injured animals.

At this stage around 400 properties remain without power due to this devastating fire which is now under control.  We want to give a shout out to DFES, DBCA, volunteer bushfire brigades and all those that have been involved in this huge collective effort.

The response and rebuild of the electricity network in the fireground area is one the biggest we’ve had to undertake as a result of bushfire.

Unfortunately, property owners without power at this point are unlikely to be restored until rebuild, which will take weeks not days, and should seek alternative arrangements.

Our crews scoping and assessment so far has identified over 600 damaged assets, including 460 poles and 28 transformers  - and we haven’t  assessed all areas yet. We’ve got six out of 14 areas left to assess and we’re planning on having this completed this week.

Construction will take several weeks with hundreds of poles and transformers needing replacing. Reconstruction started over the weekend in the areas east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Allen Street; along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; along Reserve Road and the east end of Reen Road.  So far we’ve replaced 61 poles, two kilometres of conductor and eight transformers.

Please be assured we’re working as quickly and safely as possible and have mobilised additional metro and regional crews to get this work done, we’ll have around 20-24 crews on site this week, that’s around 200 employees plus all the personnel to support the crews.

We’re continuing to inspect and clear other areas of the fire area with the help of Urban Search and Rescue. Once clear, we’ll begin scoping to begin the rebuild phase in those areas.  

The WA Electrical Inspectors began visiting more than 200 properties over the weekend to assess individual property damage. Electrical Inspectors assess any damage to the property’s switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected.

We advise property owners to be careful of hazards when they return to their properties. We remind people again to please not touch any Western Power assets, including poles, even if they have been made safe. We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network.   

When property owners return to their homes, they need to look for a tag or notification on the status of their electricity supply.

  • If there is a tag that says `Temporary disconnection’, the property owner or other person in charge must arrange for an electrical contractor to complete the required works. Once all defects outlined in the information pack have been rectified your supply can be reconnected.
  • If there is a tag that says `Ok to connect’, your connection has been deemed safe and you can switch your power main on.

If you are unsure whether your property has been inspected, please call 13 13 51.

For extra precaution, when `network power’ has been restored, the electrical inspector advises that you conduct a visual safety check on all external electrical equipment (bore pumps, power points, external ground lighting) within your property prior to turning on. If you find any damaged electrical equipment you must contact an electrical contractor to have the problem rectified.

Power fluctuations may occur when power is restored, so it’s helpful to unplug sensitive appliances prior to reconnecting. When reconnected, turn on appliances progressively, starting with lights and small appliances. If you experience any shocks, zaps or tingles report them immediately on 13 13 51.

We understand this is a difficult time for many Western Australians. This process is in place to ensure your safety. If you require more information, please visit www.waei.com.au

Please be aware that if you wish to connect a generator you should contact your local electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 before doing so.

We’re attending community meetings this week to help customers with any questions they might have. We thank the affected community for their patience and will keep them updated as our rebuild program progresses.

Important links:

Resources are available for community members at www.westernpower.com.au including information on:

  • Staying safe, including using generators.

  • Stay 8m away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and make the safe call to us on 13 13 51 (24/7) so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

  • The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160, so if you’ve been without power for more than 12 hours because of these fires you can apply for the extended outage payment online.

Wooroloo bushfire outage FAQs

We have been able to restore power to four homes in the Wooroloo bushfire area today, reducing the number of homes and businesses without power to 389.

Our crews are operating from the Gidgegannup Recovery Depot and work is well underway to rebuild the network with reconstruction work started in the areas east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Allen Street; along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; along Reserve Road and the east end of Reen Road.

Our team from the WA Electrical Inspectors are visiting properties to check for any damage which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected. If a customer’s property is marked safe to connect, a small tag will be attached to the switchboard.

We’re mindful that rain this afternoon and this evening will challenge the rebuild efforts, with potentially muddy conditions in what is already difficult terrain to access.

The Extended Outage Payment Scheme has been doubled for customers affected by this bushfire from $80 to $160.  Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment online.

As damage to the network will take time to rebuild, we understand some residents may wish to connect generators. Properties within the fire ground cannot connect a generator until they have been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector for damage. Please contact your local electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 for further information regarding connecting generators.

Every morning this week our community engagement team will be available at the Swan Active Centre on Gray Drive in Midvale. We’ll have the latest information about reconnections, network rebuild and our Extended Outage Payment Scheme, which has been doubled to $160 for the Wooroloo bushfire.

This week’s schedule:

  • Mon: 10.30am to 1pm
  • Tue-Fri: 9am to 12pm

Please come and see us if you have any questions.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and make the safe call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.  

Wooroloo bushfire outage FAQs

Around 393 homes and businesses remain without power due to the Wooroloo bushfire. We are also responding to a number of weather-related outages across the network.

Our crews are operating from the Gidgegannup Recovery Depot and work is now well underway to rebuild the network.

Crews from metropolitan and regional depots have been mobilised to support the recovery effort. Eight construction teams (40 employees) were on site yesterday with an additional nine teams (45 employees) joining them today.

Reconstruction work has begun in the areas east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Allen Street; along Toodyay Road to Aspen Road; along Reserve Road and the east end of Reen Road.

Our teams behind the scenes are planning the work needed in three further areas. We’re continuing to inspect and clear other parts of the fire area with the help of Urban Search and Rescue teams, and, once clear, will hand over to our scoping team to begin the rebuild phase there.

Our team from the WA Electrical Inspectors has begun visiting properties to check for any damage which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected. If a customer’s property is marked safe to connect, a small tag will be attached to the switchboard.

An emergency generator was successfully installed around 8pm on Friday night on Reserve Road Gidgegannup, which restored power to 70 customers. A small number of customers in the Clenton Road area were successfully restored from this generator yesterday.

We’re mindful that rain this afternoon and this evening will challenge the rebuild efforts, with potentially muddy conditions in what is already difficult terrain to access.

The Extended Outage Payment Scheme has been doubled for customers affected by this bushfire from $80 to $160.  Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment online.

As damage to the network will take time to rebuild, we understand some residents may wish to connect generators.

Properties within the fire ground cannot connect a generator until they have been inspected by a WA Electrical Inspector for damage.

Please contact your local electrical contractor or Building and Energy on 1300 489 099 for further information regarding connecting generators.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen powerlines or other damage to the network and make the safe call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.  

Around 460 homes and businesses remain without power due to the Wooroloo bushfire.

An emergency generator was successfully installed around 8pm last night on Reserve Road Gidgegannup, which restored power to a further 70 customers. Work will continue today with the aim to restore a small number of customers in the Clenton Road area from this generator.

Our crews are up and running from the Gidgegannup Recovery Depot and have begun work in the area east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Allen Street. We’ll keep customers updated about our progress here.

All available crews from metropolitan and regional depots have been mobilised to support the recovery effort, with eight construction teams (40 employees) beginning work today, plus an additional nine teams (45 employees) joining them on Sunday.

Main Roads have confirmed that Old Toodyay Road will remain closed for the time being so that our crews can continue clearing to make the area safe.

We’re mindful that rain this afternoon and this evening will challenge the rebuild efforts, with potentially muddy conditions in what is already difficult terrain to access.

We’re continuing to inspect and clear other areas of the fire area with Urban Search and Rescue, and, once clear, will hand over to our scoping team to begin the rebuild phase there.

The Extended Outage Payment Scheme has been doubled for customers affected by this bushfire from $80 to $160. Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment online.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen powerlines or other damage to the network and make the safe call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

Around 480 homes and businesses remain without power due to the Wooroloo bushfire.

We were able to restore power to a further 75 customers this evening. Unfortunately, current conditions indicate that those customers without power at this point are unlikely to be restored until the rebuild is completed.

Our crews have access to most of the fire ground with scoping and preparation work well underway.

We’ve established our recovery depot site on Toodyay Road in Gidgegannup, and materials and poles have been arriving today in readiness to begin reconstruction work tomorrow in the area east of Toodyay Road between Dinsdale Road and Allen Street. We’ll know more about how long this will take in the next day or so.

All available crews from metropolitan and regional depots have been mobilised to support the recovery effort, with eight construction teams (40 employees) beginning work tomorrow and an additional nine teams (45 employees) joining them on Sunday.

Repair and restoration is going to take a significant rebuild over several weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeder lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network.

We’ll keep updating times as our scoping and preparation work continues with access to different areas of the fire ground.

We’re also ready for the weather forecast during the next few days with the possibility of rain on Saturday.

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160. Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment online.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen powerlines or other damage to the network and make the safe call to 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

Around 600 homes and businesses remain without power due to the Wooroloo bushfire.

We have been able to restore power to a further 100 customers on the fringes of the fireground overnight. Unfortunately, current conditions indicate that those customers without power at this point are unlikely to be restored until the rebuild is completed.

Our crews now have access to most of the fireground with scoping and preparation work well underway.

Repair and restoration is going to take a significant rebuild over several weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeders lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network. We’ll keep updating times as our scoping and preparation work continues with access to different areas of the fireground.

We’re also ready for the weather forecast during the next few days with the possibility of rain on Saturday.

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160.  Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment.

Stay up to date with estimated restoration times at our power outages page.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

Around 700 homes and businesses remain without power due to the Wooroloo bushfire.

Western Power was able to restore power to a further 100 customers on the fringes of the fireground on Thursday.

Western Power now has access to five sectors (east and north of Old Toodyay Road) of the fireground. With support from the Urban Search and Rescue team we were able to earth the perimeter and remove hazards that are blocking roads. In these five sectors alone, there are more than 150 poles and 100 transformers down in the fire scar area.

Our scopers have started determining which assets need replacing in these sectors. Poles will be delivered to laydown areas tomorrow and an operations base is being set up so we’re ready to start work as soon as we have the go-ahead. We’re forecasting reconstruction to commence on Saturday.

We anticipate that repair and restoration will require a significant rebuild over several weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeders lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network. We’ll know more about the time that will take as we continue gaining access to more of the fireground.

We’re also ready for the weather forecasted during the next few days with strong easterly winds forecast for tonight, and the possibility of rain on Saturday. Repair and restoration times will be affected by weather and high fire danger ratings as we alter our work practices to minimise bushfire risk, and we can only reenergise when the fire danger rating falls to a safe level.

The Extended Outage Payment System has been doubled for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160.  Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours because of direct or indirect effects of these fires can apply for the extended outage payment.

Our thoughts continue to be with those families who are displaced by the fire emergency and are without power because of damage to the network.  We’ll continue to keep the community updated on our restoration efforts.

Separate to the main Wooroloo fire, we’re also responding to three new bushfires this afternoon which have caused or have the potential to damage assets: in Bullsbrook, Toodyay where damage to a feeder has left 2000 customers without power, and in Munster currently affecting 176 customers.

Stay up to date with estimated restoration times at our power outages page.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

We've been able to restore power to 200 customers on the fringes of the fireground on Wednesday night.

We were granted access to Sectors 1 to 4 of the fire ground (east of Old Toodyay Road) and with support from the Urban Search and Rescue team we were able to earth the perimeter and remove assets that are blocking roads. In these four sectors alone, there are more than 150 poles and 100 transformers down in the fire scar area.

We anticipate that repair and restoration will require a significant rebuild over a number of weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeder lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network. We’ll know more about the time that will take as we continue gaining access to more of the fireground. 

We’re currently planning for this rebuild to ensure we have the resources and equipment ready to safely repair and restore power to customers as quickly as we can.  

We’re also ready for the weather forecasted during the next few days with the possibility of strong easterly winds in parts of the state, light rain and humidity along with ash from the bushfire falling on network infrastructure, which may result in pole top fires.  Repair and restoration times will be affected by weather and high fire danger ratings as we alter our work practices to minimise bushfire risk, and we can only reenergise when the fire danger rating falls to a safe level.

The Extended Outage Payment System for customers affected by the devastating bushfires has increased from $80 to $160. 

Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours can apply for the extended outage payment.

Our thoughts continue to be with those families who are displaced by the fire emergency and are without power because of damage to the network.  We’ll continue to keep the community updated on our restoration efforts .

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

More information:

Around 1,100 homes and businesses are without power due to the bushfire burning in parts of The Vines, Bailup, Ellenbrook, Upper Swan Valley, Millendon, Aveley, Red Hill, Belhus, Baskerville, Herne Hill, Bullsbrook, Wooroloo, Brigadoon and Gidgegannup in the shires of Mundaring, Chittering and Northam and the City of Swan.

We were able to restore power to a further 200 customers today on the fringes of the fireground through backfeeding power to homes.

Our crews are working with Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES)  and were able to safely access parts of the fireground today to start scoping and assess network damage where possible.  At this stage we know there has been significant damage with at least 150 poles and 100 transformers down in the fire scar area.

We anticipate that repair and restoration will require a significant rebuild over a number of weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeders lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network.

We’ll know more about the time that will take once we’re able to fully access the fireground in the coming days. 

We’re currently planning for this rebuild to ensure we have the resources and equipment ready to safely repair and restore power to customers as quickly as we can.  

We’re also ready for the weather forecasted during the next few days with the possibility of strong easterly winds in parts of the state, light rain and humidity along with ash from the bushfire falling on network infrastructure.

Repair and restoration times will be affected by weather and high fire danger ratings as we alter our work practices to minimise bushfire risk, and we can only reenergise when the fire danger rating falls to a safe level.

The Extended Outage Payment System for customers affected by the devastating bushfires from $80 to $160. 

Customers who have been without power for more than 12 hours can apply for the extended outage payment.

Our thoughts continue to be with those families who are displaced by the fire emergency and are without power because of damage to the network.  We’ll continue to keep the community updated on our restoration efforts .

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen power lines or other damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

Important links:

Around 1,300 homes and businesses are without power due to the bushfire burning in parts of The Vines, Bailup, Ellenbrook, Upper Swan Valley, Millendon, Aveley, Red Hill, Belhus, Baskerville, Herne Hill, Bullsbrook, Wooroloo, Brigadoon and Gidgegannup in the shires of Mundaring, Chittering and Northam and the City of Swan.

Our Network Operations Centre and crews were able to restore power to some homes on the outskirts of the fire area overnight reducing the number of customers without power down from 2000 yesterday.

Our crews are working with Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES)  to safely access parts of the fireground today to scope and assess network damage where possible.  At this stage we know there has been significant damage with around 150 poles and 100 transformers down in the fire scar area.

We anticipate that repair and restoration will require a significant rebuild over a number of weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or whole feeders lines have been burnt and need replacing to restore those sections of the network. We’ll know more about the time that will take once we’re able to access the fireground in the coming days.

We’re currently planning for this rebuild to ensure we have the resources and equipment ready to safely repair and restore power to customers as quickly as we can.

We’re also ready for the weather forecasted during the next few days with the possibility of light rain and humidity along with ash from the bushfire falling on network infrastructure.

Repair and restoration times will be affected by weather and high fire danger ratings as we alter our work practices to minimise bushfire risk, and we can only reenergise when the fire danger rating falls to a safe level.

Our thoughts continue to be with those families who are displaced by the fire emergency and are without power because of damage to the network

We’ll continue to keep the community updated on our restoration efforts .

We urge people to stay 8m away from any damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 (24/7 line) so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

 

Important links:

Around 2,000 homes and businesses are without power due to the bushfire burning in parts of The Vines, Bailup, Ellenbrook, Upper Swan Valley, Millendon, Aveley, Red Hill, Belhus, Baskerville, Herne Hill, Bullsbrook, Wooroloo, Brigadoon and Gidgegannup in the shires of Mundaring, Chittering and Northam and the City of Swan.

We are working closely with the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) to remove fire damaged powerlines and poles to enable DFES crews to access the fireground. At this stage we’re unable to safely access the fireground to assess and repair network infrastructure and restore power.

There has been significant damage to this part of the network with around 150 poles and 100 transformers down in the fire scar area. We’re currently planning for a significant rebuild of this infrastructure in the coming days.
Our thoughts continue to be with those families that are displaced by the fire emergency and are without power because of damage to the network.

We urge people to stay eight metres away from any fallen powerlines or other damage to the network and report it to us on 13 13 51 so that emergency response crews can attend the hazard to make the area safe.

Important links:

Wooroloo bushfire outage FAQs

Repair and restoration will take a significant rebuild over a number of weeks in some areas, depending on whether parts or while feeder lines have been burned.

While you may be able to return to your property soon, it will take time for normal electricity supply to return.

Our WA Electrical Inspectors will visit properties to assess individual property damage.

They will assess any damage to the switchboard and anything visible outside of the house which could pose a safety concern when the property is reconnected. If a customer’s property is marked safe to connect, a small tag will be attached to the switchboard.

Read the full article about the role of WA Electrical Inspectors during the bushfire recovery. 

Western Power provides an extended outage payment to acknowledge community inconvenience during periods without power.  

The extended outage payment is usually $80 but has been increased to $160 for customers impacted by this bushfire event, either directly or indirectly. It is a courtesy payment and is separate from the disaster relief payments offered by the Federal Government. 

You can apply, once power is reconnected. To find out more and lodge a claim, visit our extended outage page

You will need your meter number and bank details to do this. We can help you fill out the form over the phone – please call 13 13 51 for assistance.

In support of Western Australians affected by the recent Wooroloo bushfire, Western Power is waiving fees related to network connections and reconnections for residents whose properties were impacted by the bushfire.

For residents whose property has been destroyed by the fire, we’ll be waiving the cost of establishing a temporary builder supply (if required), which can be up to $555. Where property or network connections have been damaged but not destroyed by the fire, reconnecting existing customers’ points and replacing meters will be free of charge as per our normal practice.

There are many variables that come into play when deciding what type of electricity network to build or replace in each area. Like all our decisions, we are constantly weighing up the community’s desires against our need to invest wisely when it comes to deciding on overhead and underground power.

When overhead powerlines reach the end of their lifespan and need to be upgraded, the area is assessed individually and the safest, most reliable and cost-effective solution will be determined – whether that be underground or overhead.

In areas with an existing overhead network, it is not cost-effective to replace the network ahead of its normal lifespan – when it’s in, it’s better to maintain than completely replace.

We’ve assessed using concrete poles in the past, and there are a number of reasons they’re not suitable.

  1. WA has highly resistant soils (in terms of electricity passing through the earth’s surface – or returning to “earth”). Concrete and steel poles require more complicated and more expensive earthing protection systems as a result, because of their own individual conductivity properties (they are better conductors). Wood is the most efficient option for WA conditions.

  2. Often it’s not just the wood part of the pole that’s the fire risk, it’s the infrastructure on the top of the pole. Conductors and insulators are also affected by fire - so while the pole may be still standing, we often have to do work on the equipment that attaches to the pole. A wood pole is relatively inexpensive (about 10% of the cost of replacing a pole and conductor and insulators etc), and adds little to the work that would be required by a crew after a fire.

  3. All our new wood poles are treated with fire retardant paint that helps reduce their combustibility.

While our current pole donation program is suspended, it is being reviewed and more information will available early next week.