Update on Port Gregory jetty
Following the passage of Cyclone Seroja, the WAFIC Chair, Murray Criddle, travelled to check on the welfare of the Port Gregory community. There were obvious issues with the lack of electricity, mobile phone connectivity and drinking water, but it also became evident that the jetty was now completely unserviceable.
It’s well known that significant silting has occurred at the site for a number of years – and has been repeatedly raised with government – but it became clear that the matter had gone too far as it’s now possible to drive a 4WD around the jetty.
So WAFIC immediately wrote to the Transport Minister, Rita Saffioti, and requested that some remedial dredging occur. We’ve already received a written response which indicates that government believes that dredging is likely to only provide a short-term benefit of less than two years before further siltation may again restrict jetty access, with cost also cited as factor.
The Department of Transport (DoT) has reportedly looked at other ways to make the jetty serviceable through options including dredging or a jetty extension, however due to the rapid rate of siltation DoT considers neither option is viable for the long-term. However, DoT will continue to monitor coastal processes in the area to determine whether long-term interventions become viable. In the meantime, routine maintenance of the jetty will continue to be carried out.
WAFIC will continue to track this issue and make ongoing representations when the best opportunities arise. We’d like to think that boats should be able to nudge the jetty when needed and that kids should be able to get their lines wet when they cast their rods.