North Fremantle buildings on verge of collapse after storms erode coastline

Nicolas Perpitch
Swellnet Dispatch

Last week, bulldozers began dumping tonnes of sand in front of buildings theatening to collapse into the ocean at North Fremantle. The danger was caused by heavy erosion following a recent series of storms that removed much of the dunes at Port Beach.

Part of the retaining wall near Coast restaurant completely collapsed, and large slabs of concrete fell onto the sand. The path leading from the beach to the change rooms also caved in and had to be blocked off.

The sand, however, wasn't taken offshore but moved northwards with longshore drift towards Leighton Beach. That sand was dug up by a front-end loader and tipped back in front of the Coast bar building, changerooms, and Fremantle surf club annex at Port Beach. It's a temporary move to give immediate protection to the buildings as the Council considers making a sea wall.

A front-end loader being used to dump sand back along the Port Beach coastline (Photo ABC News/Nicolas Perpitch)

The council said it was aware the new sand could be washed away in the next storm. "We're also looking into the possibility of building some temporary rock walls to provide more protection to the facilities at the beach in the event of further storms," Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said.

No major storms are forecast for Perth over the next week, however the problems will stretch out much further than that.

Beach remains closed as damage assessed

City of Fremantle staff, coastal engineers and representatives from the Department of Transport assessed the damage from the storms, but Port Beach, including nearby Sand Tracks, remains closed and signs have been put up warning people to stay away and out of the water.

The Port Beach coastline has been hammered by recent storms, leaving buildings in danger (Photo City of Fremantle)

The damage is the latest in a series of events on the stretch of coast. In May last year, storms caused severe erosion, large chunks of the carpark fell away, walkways collapsed, and sand dunes disappeared, exposing potentially hazardous metal and wooden poles at the water line. Industrial debris and rocks — dumped there from port-related infrastructure over the decades — are still visible in the shallows along the reclaimed coastal stretch.

A 2004 Department of Planning and Infrastructure study on coastal erosion at Port Beach found Sand Tracks was eroding at a rate of about two metres per year and Port Beach by 0.8 metres per year, while Leighton Beach was growing.

The Port Beach carpark has been undercut by erosion after storms in recent years (Photo City of Fremantle)

It said Port Beach had previously been expanding, mainly because of 10 million cubic tonnes of dredge material dumped along the shoreline and further offshore between 1890 and 1970.

"This dredge material has been moving onshore and providing an artificial supply of sand to Port Beach for many years. This sand feed has now stopped," the report said. "This erosion trend is expected to continue."

"This will progressively reduce beach amenity and leave car parks and existing buildings increasingly vulnerable to storm erosion."

The council said a draft report providing long-term options to manage the erosion at Port Beach was expected to be released for public comment later next month.

//NICOLAS PERPITCH
© Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

Comments

Elliedog's picture
Elliedog's picture
Elliedog commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 3:39pm

will we ever learn?????

Luba

Adam71's picture
Adam71's picture
Adam71 commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 5:00pm

No they won’t, & never will, greed

uncle_leroy's picture
uncle_leroy's picture
uncle_leroy commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 4:03pm

All reference to it has been removed from online, but one backyard Geologist suggested dredging of the Cockburn Sound by a cement company may be to blame for lack of sand on Perth metro beaches.
This is the cement companies reply - https://www.cockburncementcommunity.com.au/news/news/latest-news/2019/to...

uncle_leroy's picture
uncle_leroy's picture
uncle_leroy commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 4:11pm

Ironic that big business can dredge the seafloor but if you anchor inside a bay you can be fined for damaging seaweed

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 8:44am

Too true. The extreme eco-rules and laws that are put in place by a tiny minority, alienate the much much larger moderate chunk of the population which sends them even further away from caring for the environment. Good and just objectives get overshadowed by the farcical extremism in the movement.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:01am

What extreme eco-rules , what tiny majority that puts laws in place , what movement has farcical extremism in their movement, you sound like a right wing climate change denier/nutter!!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:15am

You can’t even read what I said. Read it again. The massive mainstream middle ground is what needs to be shifted a little. It influences politics and the environmental movement and the economy and at times the hyper sensitive eco laws like fining someone for putting an anchor into a seaweed bed near a mangrove can do more damage to the movement than good. . If Greenpeace or any other body wants to make big changes then they need to be more moderate when the damage is symbolic not actual.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 1:46pm

Greg you are getting nonsensical again...I read it again "Too true. The extreme eco-rules and laws that are put in place by a tiny minority, alienate the much much larger moderate chunk of the population which sends them even further away from caring for the environment. Good and just objectives get overshadowed by the farcical extremism in the movement."
Do you realize that the "Rules are put in place by a majority Govt/Council...not a tiny minority as you claim!
So how does the voting majority not care for the enviroment with their rules being put in place...you are farcical!!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 10:07am

Yeah the tiny minority on the extreme left. That make it very difficult for the middle left and middle right (the vast majority) to dare to even comment if the perspective even slightly wavers from their hard line ‘narrative’.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 11:06am

listen you idiot , the majority makes the rules , so the rules are not made by the "tiny minority on the extreme left" , and the majority does comment and offer their perspective as thats what makes the rules , duh!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 11:31am

This is going to annoy you but situations and actions can be farcical not people. Just stick to calling me the other names.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 9:34am

but to date your actions on your ideas has amounted to zero , which is a farcical situation , but not for a conman!

GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 5:54pm

If you’re looking for a motive always back the horse called self interest ...... awwww, why can’t I exploit what I want without those extreme latte sipping inner city eco-police getting in my way?

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 10:03am

Nice!

Feralkook's picture
Feralkook's picture
Feralkook commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 8:10pm

This makes me think about how or whether Greg Webber's new arti reef or a number of them may be a solution using them to disrupt the wave pattern and stop the loss of sand from the beach. Given the modularity and ability to shape the reef by opening and closing. Over to you Greg, I know the device was not designed with this purpose in mind but frangers were never designed to go over your head and face and be inflated like the elephant man either and that works a treat.

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 8:57am

Love the franger analogy!
Well they were not as you say originally designed to protect the coast but that’s always a potential side effect of making waves break on any structure outside the break.. Yes the Vwalls could be used to deflect swells back out to sea but would of course need to be beefed up in order to handle the forces. Possibly use pilings instead of anchoring. The beauty of the adjustability is that you can either make waves for surfing at low angles around 45 degrees or block swells at greater than 90 degrees. Then I guess the ideal solution is a Vreef which is much larger and totally destroys the swell in its wake. It’s cuts each swell in half and makes them peel along a 45 degree angle so that their energy and power is dissipated over a period of time. Since there is no massive impact of any wave against a flat surface like a sea wall then the forces are graduated. It’s like load spreading but not over a surface but over time. Yes that’s a bit of a funny analogy but you started it!!

Feralkook's picture
Feralkook's picture
Feralkook commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 4:57pm

"Love the franger analogy!
Well they were not as you say originally designed to protect the coast but that’s always a potential side effect of making waves break on any structure outside the break.."
Thanks Greg, so some potential there. Don't worry you can slip me some commission if the new Webber "Beefyreef" anti erosion wave wall takes off, you can use "Beefyreef" if ya like, just give me credit for my creativity, hahahahaha!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:28am

Ha! Credit earned!

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 1:22pm

Franger, now there's a classic condom name not used enough.

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 9:07pm

What warning signs? Bring on the Freeo Storm Surfers

Basherz get ready to Bash
https://www.communitynews.com.au/western-suburbs-weekly/news/storm-churn...

Foamies get ready to Foamball
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-28/fremantle-beaches-damaged-in-pert...

Skegz! Go crowd out that wave break.
https://images.perthnow.com.au/publication/B88847853Z/1527313836814_G3P1...

Freeo Storm Surfers.."Surf the shit outta them waves & Save Our Beaches!"

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:30am

That’s a proper drop off. Is that pic of the erosion current?

Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 9:49pm

Freo Mayor says it’s because of rising sea levels and we should expect more erosion in the future. Probably more to do with man made breakwalls and groins and a constantly moving coastline that got built on too close to the storm line.
The rapidly growing beach on the south side outside Hillarys Marina is very interesting and could explain the rapid decline in surf quality (sand) of perths beachies and reefs, over the years as the sand slowly filled in by the southerlies but can’t get pushed back by the norwester.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:06am

I think we are going to get the new sea level rise models at the end of this year , looks grim , but we have plenty of time to make a plan !

Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 3:15pm

It’s impossible nowdays to seperate the science from the politics especially since the left is playing dirty now too.
I’m yet to see evidence of rising sea levels. Erosion? Of course.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 1:55pm

Two words: Younger Dryas.

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:36am

The modelling is close to useless. Ask the Japanese scientist who created the first models decades ago. (Forgot his name.) And it’s almost criminal to pretend to have a valid tool for forecasting when so few physical elements are used in the models. Doesn’t disprove the chance of sea level rise but it does give a tool to create concern when there’s no indication of any significant change. Sea levels have been rising 1mm or so each year well before industrialisation. And as you might know, entire continents move and are still moving so how can anyone say whether it’s the land or the ocean or a bit of both. ?

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 9:45am

now a climate change denier , you do realize that since the first models were done there has been steady progress in technology , surely a mastermind / genius like yourself would understand after all those uni's you went to....or......

when you say "Doesn’t disprove the chance of sea level rise but it does give a tool to create concern when there’s no indication of any significant change. " have you been to a beach in the last 30 yrs?
are you aware how much coast has been lost and how much is under threat from Sea Level rise....what I am seeing in France/SoCal/Japan and Australia is enormous erosion caused by sea level rise....or you would say maybe continents sinking ...can't wait for your new idea....." save the continents , give me money and I will save you all!!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:41am

Just read the first few paragraphs of this from last year:
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2018/10/16/study-another-failure-of-climate-...

GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley commented Monday, 17 Jun 2019 at 9:55pm

The climate canary is just starting to tweet .... expect more of this.

Anybody else seen the modelling for catastrophic flooding of all those FNQ pro-Adani coastal towns come the expected massive cyclones with their torrential rain and tidal surges?

They are all going to go well under, cyclone Katrina like.

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 9:30am

Maybe not. Check the mapping of Co2 against temperature rise and tell us all which one comes first.

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:03am

you sound more and more like Trump everyday!

Basil's picture
Basil's picture
Basil commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 1:39pm

Are you denying that increasing levels of Co2 (and other gases) in the atmosphere is causing the planet to warm?

Basil

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:30pm

Maybe. But I’m not sure. The correlation between Co2 rise and planet wide temperature rise is not that good. While the correlation between solar flare activity and temperature rise is very tight. I haven’t read any of the reports so I’m just going off documentaries like you probably are. However the biggest worry about the link between Co2 levels, whether man made or not, is that the temperature rise comes BEFORE the Co2 rise.

redbeard's picture
redbeard's picture
redbeard commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 10:29am

https://youtu.be/FBF6F4Bi6Sg

Something for you to watch Greg I think it covers CO2 and temperature at myth #7 or #8 but study the whole thing.
Should note the guy isn't some YouTube crackpot he used to host media watch. His research is thourough and he sites his sources unlike most.

Or even better give this a watch addresses your specific claim CO2 lags temperature rise.

https://youtu.be/zQ3PzYU1N7A

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:49am

Ok thanks Redbeard will check it out.

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 7:19am

Great thanks. I guess that means we can apply his kinetic energy analogy to everything that he says, just as well. Makes it hard to get any clarity without reading scores of papers. He rightfully shows that categorical statements by nobodies can be used cleverly to enhance the narrators narrative, so then we have to ask who is he and how qualified is he? The main concern I have with any theory that suggests man has created a certain problem is less to do with the problem and more to do with how people react to the fact that man caused the problem and so we can hate mankind. Eg if we heard a report that great whites were dying due an amoeba that was attaching to some connective tissue behind the gills and was then entering the bloodstream we would be disappointed and worried and hope to help even, but if a human kills a great white then many people will have huge anger towards that person. Which proves that the actual occurrence is not in any way the most important element in the situation, but that a human did something that some people hate humans for doing, which is why we will fight amongst ourselves all the way to the end. Irrespective of what causes the end. (Ie man or the planet itself or the sun or a giant meteorite).

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 7:25am

Interesting. Looks like all models have significant limits on predicting fluctuations over small time periods let alone decades.

GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 5:46pm

I’ve known plenty of shapers that were big on philosophy, the cosmos and enlightenment, all enhanced from use of acid, but it’s a first for me to see a shaper comment on science. Best stick to your knitting Greg

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:43pm

Why? Science was by far my best subject in secondary school and I went to Sydney uni and NSW uni for the sole purpose of understanding wave dynamics and their effects on coastal regions but really just to learn how to build wave pools and artificial reefs. I studied geomorphology and pedology at NSW but struggled with things like the cation exchange capacity of montmorillonite soils. (Always loved that sentence) also my mum is a sculptor and great artist and my dad is a very good writer and was hugely supported by the editors of SMH over nearly 20 years due to his critical letter writing. So I think that academic background and the mix of genes and parenting hasn’t hurt.

GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley's picture
GuySmiley commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 8:53am

Touche

brutus's picture
brutus's picture
brutus commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 1:55pm

or is he telling the truth ?
I actually went Harvard was really good at science and law , top of my class , signed Donald Webber!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 7:44am

Yes if you could be bothered I’d be enrolled at both unis but didn’t finish either degree. First mistake was entering NSW. Mid way through the second semester I was asking one of the lecturers about where the model test basin is since I wanted to just see what waves or model that they were running. He then said kind of sheepishly that I’m probably in the wrong uni for coastal engineering and I should have enrolled at Sydney!! What an idiot to not check that out. I just presumed that they both had great wave research departments. My brother John was doing architecture at NSW so maybe I just thought it’d be great to go the same uni and didn’t even think to choose Sydney.
So then I go to Sydney and half way through second semester again I asked a third year student what were these striations on an aerial pic of the ocean that the class was studying and he couldn’t answer and even got a bit shitty and said “sorry mate you’re doing probability analysis on data, and won’t be getting into this stuff till third year” I did one exam and walked out completely disillusioned. Too fucking slow. Now 40 years later it’s still fucking slow. But when the time is right these big and unusual things finally get built. Maybe one day I can build my own research lab and massive prototyping factory and build full scale models at high speed and just test them without permission and pay the fines.

Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake's picture
Westofthelake commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 2:10pm

Found this little nugget in the sub cockles of the Parliamentary Library.

I'd be interested to see if there is an updated version as the info is 10 years old, yet the forecast undeniable.....slowly but surely, maybe even exponentially. Time will tell.

Sea Levels are Rising
https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parlia...

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 1:29am

Ode to you know who!

Climate Change did scorch the land.
Good ol' Sea Change will set us free.
Stampeding beach hoarders undermined the shore.
Seawall People stacked so high, sea birds can't fly.
One by one the poor ocean could cough up no more.
Shh! The replay,outta my way...don't tell me the score!

by you,me & the crew.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 1:26pm

Seems to be a classic case of building on the foredunes years ago and not realising these are a work in progress. Be interesting to see what the coast was like prior to white settlement and how the sand works up and down the coast. See levels are obviously an issue but this looks way more localised.

TAB's picture
TAB's picture
TAB commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 3:34pm

Climate change is exasperating this situation but local issues also at play. An area just south of Port Beach (Rous Head) is reclaimed land which affects sand flow. The Perth coastline is very straight with minimal headlands so any man made feature (like reclaimed land or Hillarys Boat Harbour) will affect sand flow.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 3:35pm

Where's Velocity Johnno when you need him?

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 6:45pm

A couple of days away from PC.

OK - let's do this TBB style.

1890s iirc - Freo harbour is blasted. There had been rock at its mouth. Was it the great CY O'Connor who was in charge of this? (Tragic tale, he shoots himself while on his horse on Port Beach. His water pipeline to Kalgoorlie had yet to see a drop exit, 2 weeks or so after pumping began, and the naysayers were out in force. After his death, water begins flowing. It is an engineering marvel. RIP).

History of Freo Port:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fremantle_Harbour

Note pic of battlecruiser 'Renown' in port... what VJ would have given to see that! Also, here's the best link to a pic VJ can find of north end of harbour, mid 1920's, in background. At link, 9th image down is overlooking Freo harbour from the bridge of the battlecruiser 'Hood' (Note rangefinding clocks on the two 'D' class cruisers in front for extra anorak points):

https://nineteenkeys.blogspot.com/2010/05/remembering-hms-hood-sunk-on-t...

So Freo is far more open as a port. Photos of the time show low rocky headland to the north of the opening of the Swan River. We can assume a nice beach from there into Leighton? Anyway, that's academic, as the North Mole (edit: should read, Rous Head, NM already build and good sandbanks remained) is eventually planned and built.
*Leighton and Cables, I believe, had the current 'cliff' totally reconstructed sometime before my existence. They are an artificial landscape. Excavation for rail lines behind them? Quarry? Cables is reputedly the place De Vlamingh's party came ashore 10 Jan 1697.
North Mole (edit, again, should read 'Rous Head') is a giant sand stop. Recall from Swellnet that while the east coast north of NSW mid sees 500,000 tonnes of sand shift past every point each year, on the West Coast it's only 50,000. So sand sensitivity will be more acute. The old timers say late 50's Port Beach had shapely little peelers. Instead, large rock groynes and a harbour. Does this affect sand flow? It has to.
VJ is very curious that the enviro report in Stu's report suggests dredging 1890 to 1970 created a surplus of sand, flowing north, which has ended. Perhaps they know better than the simple idea that every time you build/extend a groyne you create sand starvation to the north. Eg: Bunbury Port, Geraldton Marina to Glennies. Well, they get paid the big bucks.
Freo council suggesting more groynes to stabilise this, facepalm. It's like this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5JiPj9c98Y

Cockburn Cement dredging Cockburn sound, yeah maybe. The snapper were way bigger in the 1950's too... Also: Swellnet exclusive, it's pronounced 'Coburn'.
There has also been a recent extension of Rous Head area (near Sandtrax) by Freo Ports, little birds have been sent for...
In total, when you alter the coastal sand flows in WA, it's sensitive. Further eg: surfs beach sandbanks before Secret Harbour development stabilised the dunes mid 1990s.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 2:27pm

Third person narrative, associated links to build the case, data heavy, the only thing you've gotta work on is the obscurantism. In that department, TBB is a world beater.

But well done, VJ. Worth the wait!

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 2:41pm

Thank you, I better do some real work now!
Stu, it will be interesting just what the truth with the sand is - as a journo, there are competing narratives for why it's eroding. Wonder what the truth is?

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 2:45pm

Like you, I'm a bit leery on the reasons given in the article for why sand flow stopped.

Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean's picture
Lanky Dean commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 3:33pm

Fantastic @ velocityjohno.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 4:04pm

Further to those links 2 pics:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willem_de_Vlamingh#/media/File:Vlamingh_sh...

A copy of the original drawing of De Vlamingh's mouth of Swan river. Note dunes/limestone hills extending into South Freo, and note little rocky headland at north (left) of river mouth. LInk might have mixed '1697' with '1796'?

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/57/1894_Plan_for_Freman...

1894 plan for Freo harbour. Note in the drawing all the beautiful sand dunes in the north (top) of the drawing where Port/Leighton is now: sand dunes = A frame peaks!

Grub Screws's picture
Grub Screws's picture
Grub Screws commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 5:46pm

Despite what people think, Perth is even more susceptible to long term sand erosion than the more active eastern and southern states. It doesn't have any big rivers depositing silt, like northern NSW, and it doesn't get the groundswells that transport sand from deep water across the continental shelf into shallower water, like southern NSW and much of the Oz south coast. What they have is all they'll have, there's no more coming, so if they make bad decisions at the coast the consequences will be dire.

Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green's picture
Eugene Green commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:01pm

Very Interesting Grub. Sand pump from Hillarys to Rous Head?!

Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber's picture
Greg Webber commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:50pm

Good points.

thermalben's picture
thermalben's picture
thermalben commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 11:21am

In that respect it's very similar to the metro SA coast.

Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 10:14pm

Agree tab ,back in the early 80,s we surfed the north mole,hence rous head reclaimed back around 89, 90,now they surf sand tracks 300 mtrs south of port beach.
Rous head is easily 1 km of reclaimed sea.,now land,the sea is gone.
Back then there was no erosion at port beach,no matter how powerful the storm,also the long groin or sea wall that is surfed now was no way as good as when we once,once,,,where able to surf the north mole.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 2:26pm

Thanks for this Sandro.

bnmac's picture
bnmac's picture
bnmac commented Tuesday, 18 Jun 2019 at 11:34pm

Last May's big storm opened the floodgates and the Port Beach erosion has been rapid ever since, especially down at the southern corner of Sandtrax. Even during the dead flat Summer months the beach was reducing very quickly, so it's no surprise to see Winter's first swells rip this section of the coastline apart. The council cleared some exposed rocks (breakwall debris) to keep it tidy for beach goers during Summer but no efforts were made to relocate sand. I'm sure the port industries are putting pressure on them now considering that there isn't much beach and dune remaining to hold the ocean back from Port Beach Road. A few more big storms and I wouldn't be surprised to see the entire southern corner of Sandtrax washed away leaving the road pretty exposed. Shutting down the main access road for trucks into the Fremantle Port container yard because of intermittent Winter swells wouldn't be great for business...

brycemacdonald.com

Simon Hayward's picture
Simon Hayward's picture
Simon Hayward commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 11:03am

Where's Gary when you need him??

Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 3:58pm

The Fremantle library obviously has historical photos of freo and the early contruction phases,,but dont qoute me on the date,but way back in the day early 1900,s may be a little earlier,I have seen 1 photo years ago at a stall in freo markets,also at the library and around at the entrance to the harbour was what looked like a beautiful left hand point break.
Just some info.

Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia's picture
Sandro gia commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 4:32pm

Thanks Velocityjohnno.
Have seen early photos of the entrance to freo harbour at the freo library years ago or at least close to the entrance and like I said there definitely was a left point break,,probably would of been an ok wave for the perth metro in late autumn,winter,spring.
All the best.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 6:32pm

I know exactly what you mean, in the link I posted above

this one:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/57/1894_Plan_for_Freman...

If you click to magnify it, you can see the pointbreak... what price a peeling left point in the Freo/Cott area today...

Feralkook's picture
Feralkook's picture
Feralkook commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 5:14pm

Government have been rabbiting on about erosion and they still insist on allowing people to construct on the shore line. Take the risk, pay the price. Eventually insurance companies will insure against everything but "Erosion" induced damage. That will hurt.

bnmac's picture
bnmac's picture
bnmac commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 5:26pm

An early photo of the harbour pre Rous Head:

https://cdn.thinglink.me/api/image/1155025766371557378/1024/10/scaletowidth

Looked like a fun setup with those small refracted swell lines.

brycemacdonald.com

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 6:35pm

that's epic bnmac, look at the shape! Good find. This must be what the older guys were telling me about... would have been quite fun on the old logs of the time by the look.

Notice also Port to Leighton has an outer bank and inshore gutter...

bnmac's picture
bnmac's picture
bnmac commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 9:41pm

Here is the source containing some more great photos illustrating the various additions made to the port since 1904:

https://mysay.fremantle.wa.gov.au/port-beach

brycemacdonald.com

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 7:30pm

Good find, bnmac!

quokka's picture
quokka's picture
quokka commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 5:42pm

Rous Head 27ha reclamation and unnatural dune stabilisation by greenies = terrible Perth surf for the foreseeable future.
P.S. Greg & Maurice need to get a room.

Sandro gia's picture
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Sandro gia commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 6:56pm

Photo,s ive seen very early,there were no rock walls,,originally before c.y. Oconnor im sure the first infrastructure was to the south of the maritime museum or Victoria Quay,,,but ive been known to be wrong before.
That's the last word.
All the best everyone.

Samo76's picture
Samo76's picture
Samo76 commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 8:34am

Go to heritage, Ports early history.
https://www.fremantleports.com.au/the-port/history-and-heritage/port's-early-history

Sandro gia's picture
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Sandro gia commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 7:00pm

See there you go,,first infrastructure probably was Oconnor.?

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 7:12pm

Dredging does occur, in the sealanes offshore (see pic in doc):

https://www.fremantleports.com.au/docs/default-source/default-document-l...

Looking at the harbour mouth, I'm not sure where the sand would come from to resupply Sandtrax and Port Beach. In this context, report is probably correct that main harbour dredging surplus is nearly exhausted. D'oh. Time for some superbank style sandflow engineering.

bnmac's picture
bnmac's picture
bnmac commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 12:00am

The council could reclaim a portion of one of the container yards, truck in sand sourced from ??? where it's stored and subsequently pumped out from North Mole? Could be managed similarly to the Dawesville and Mandurah bypassing projects.

brycemacdonald.com

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 4:47pm

I've been thinking about '???'

How about when they dredge Success channel they run a line and pump some of the sand depositing it off Rous Head. They apparently dredge Success and Parmelia channels more frequently than the harbour mouth. In time this forms a sand supply to move around Rous Head and into Sandtrax. Deposition would be irregular depending on the offshore channel dredging. If you deposit enough, and it builds up around Sandtrax, you might get a left hand superbank in Perth!

This would also feed in sand to protect Port Beach, and in time, build up sand all the way up to Cott and then beyond. Now if this is a desired thing remains to be estimated, but I reckon the council (now) and surfers (later) would be thankful.

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bnmac commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 10:32pm

Makes sense. The Fremantle Ports Maintenance Dredging Program from October last year projected to remove approximately 80,000m3 of sediment over a 3-4 month period, which ended up at Cockburn Cement for cement and lime production.

https://www.fremantleports.com.au/news/maintenance-dredging-of-success-a...

Not sure how often programs of this scale are run but i'd like to think a portion of any dredging can be kept in the ocean and used towards a Fremantle Beaches Maintenance Pumping Program. And like you said, this could see benefits right up the coastline.

Being a surfer the thought of how it could transform Sandtrax and the nearby breaks is exciting. As a possible solution to the erosion problem surely it's a far less risky option which is able to be trialed, compared to a costly and permanent rock wall or infrastructure shift which fails to address the real problem, a lack of sand resupply.

brycemacdonald.com

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 7:16pm

2nd pic down shows reclaimed area of Rous Head, Sandtrax in corner, circa 2013:

https://aushiker.com/north-mole-cycle-path/

velocityjohnno's picture
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velocityjohnno commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 7:23pm

& slightly off topic, great ABC article on the industrial hub that was North Fremantle:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-07/discovering-old-north-fremantle/6...

Always wondered why one of the great WA boardmakers I know set up in North Freo, now I know why (and those waves in bnmac's link! )

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Wednesday, 19 Jun 2019 at 11:10pm

Intermission!
tbb dipped a toe at Bathers Beach & up popped a seal...for a Goldie lad that's a treat!
First rate Heritage tour velocityjohnno & rest of the crew...so much to learn from here.
Bloody well give Stu 'Obscurantism'...that's 101 words I've learnt from #1 Surf Journo.

1st people stories can rest but tbb will muck up yer heritage trail...nothing permanent.
tbb was searching for Freo's XXL ropewalk but lost all sense of time with this tripper.

Fine line to blend Heritage & Op Art for eccentric time portal obscuro. Way out there!

Fremantle's Historic High Street (( (( (( Arcs d'Ellipses )) )) )) by Felice Varini.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-25/optical-installation-art-created-...

Blowin's picture
Blowin's picture
Blowin commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:15am

Interesting read.

Thanks to all posters who’ve contributed. Particularly enjoyed the historic photos. There’s such a wealth of knowledge within the community which is only unlocked and accessible for many people, including myself, through articles such as this.

Jamyardee's picture
Jamyardee's picture
Jamyardee commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 10:33am
bnmac's picture
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bnmac commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 11:38am

"Defence involves putting some form of coastal engineering structure in [such as] groynes or sea walls, and the retreat option is where you are actually starting to remove everything from the site — so take the buildings away, remove the roads, put the roads into a new location."

They missed a crucial third option, Rebalance – which involves ongoing replenishment of the once natural supply of sand which has been inhibited by the first identified option, Defence.

brycemacdonald.com

Jamyardee's picture
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Jamyardee commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 12:34pm

Yes good point bnmac. Given the sound is fairly closed, it would have been interesting to know the natural sand flow volumes heading North around the original river entrance. Does Sand build up on the south groynes/breakwalls, and if so how/where do they move it ? They advertised 85,000m3 sand movement for the cut this year, they just pump it North to the other side of the entrance, trying to imitate natural annual movement,but mechanically over a few months.

bnmac's picture
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bnmac commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 3:27pm

I'm not sure how much builds up on the southern end but I've never seen excavation work undertaken to manage build up if it does happen.

The direction of ocean movement predominantly coming from the SW makes it more difficult for sand to get into these NW facing beaches, especially without a strong and steady supply. There are similarities between the orientation of Port Beach and Avalon Bay, which hugely benefits from the seasonal pumping they do at Pyramids. Fremantle's harbour is just a much larger and more complex obstacle to work around.

Really interested to see what the council recommends in their report and hope it comes up with more solutions than more walls and moving infrastructure.

brycemacdonald.com

Jamyardee's picture
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Jamyardee commented Friday, 21 Jun 2019 at 10:44pm

The short term remedy will be interesting, if it is just the sand relocation, well I think the big swell mid next week, which will also be very west, won't leave much if any behind.

The experts know exactly what is happening with the coastline around Perth. They have been tracking its movement since the 40's. vegetation, tide lines, and sand drift. It will be interesting to see how they deal with the long term issue this time.

Adam71's picture
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Adam71 commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 5:18pm

Maybe, Buildings where not to be erected so close to the shoreline, shame, history repeats in some other form or another!

1981Donut's picture
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1981Donut commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:36pm

Any chance of an artificial wave to defend the coastline and create a lagoon beach side for the sand ?

•.,.’

Jamyardee's picture
Jamyardee's picture
Jamyardee commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 11:46pm

They put an artificial reef in a couple of decades ago just up the road at Cables. Problem is is that that stretch of coast is not exactly a magnet, so it hardly creates waves. As for coastal erosion beachside of the artificial reef, I wouldn't have a clue if it has helped, done nothing, or made it worse.

In addition those big swells a couple of weeks ago were very West and North West. The original report says the sand was pushed up to Leightons from Port beach, and this may be the case during the typical slow movements from the freo doc. All the beaches I have seen in the last couple of weeks have been scoured out big time from those two big swells, and the sand (in my opinion) has gone seaward, from looking at the good banks that have formed and the distance offshore that waves are breaking at several beaches.

tubeshooter's picture
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tubeshooter commented Thursday, 20 Jun 2019 at 6:40pm

Reminds me of Kingscliff a few years back ..
I remember picking pieces of 'road' {as well as shitloads of other debris} out of mullet nets further up the beach.
A timeline of that event here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=58cHmwzR7sQ though I don't think it shows the worst of the erosion that undermined the local SLSC

craigini's picture
craigini's picture
craigini commented Friday, 21 Jun 2019 at 9:38pm

The only time I ever lived that close to the ocean was in a van or a tent, ( A LOT IN MY LIFETIME) totally mobile.
Wanna live there?, Suck it up, no sympathy!
Hope you lose the lot!
PPPFFF, university educated (dumb to the real world)
rich cunts????)
Or "Oh, Mummy and Daddy helped me get my property"
FUCK OFF!

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Saturday, 22 Jun 2019 at 5:01pm

I'm with you craigini...
1967 tbb lost his family home caravan-site to the sea! No fuckin compo or fake reef.
No! We never asked nor expected hand outs & we were homeless.

Allow surf to do it's thing restoring longer Point breaks reviving Bombies & A frames.
Restocking our marine environment with 1,000 lost reefs & Shipwreck breaks.

East Coast policy is fine to toss tents,vans,cars then tow Surf Towers up the beach.
Then as if an entirely new council is bribed to pander to the rich.
GC then bury all surfbreaks by flatlining Storm bars to lure more idle rich beach bums.

It fuckin sucks big time...One coastlong party wave per town...place your orders!
Sick of funding a climate changing ever rising ocean to save idle rich who fuck us over.
25m surfers lapping peak hour Oz Wave [1]...each wave more boring than the last.
Dwindly original crew funding tycoon surfers to destroy very last decent wave. (No!)
The Ocean needs friends...don't love it then fuck off!..kick sand back at beach bullies!