Aussie resident's 'insane' 50kg find in bushland near home

A hair-raising photo shared online by one WA local showed just how lucky some people were during a tornado that ripped through Bunbury.

A beam weighing more than 50kgs pictured stuck into the soil.
The crazy discovery highlights how dangerous the storm was for Aussie locals. Source: Reddit

Hundreds of residents in Western Australia remain without power and are being warned by authorities to watch out for potential asbestos contamination as one local shares a frightening image that perfectly encapsulates the power and danger posed by a tornado which ripped through homes.

Locals in Bunbury, south of Perth, took cover on Friday evening as a 60-metre-wide tornado ripped through the area. Up to 40 homes were damaged, with dramatic vision showing entire roofs ripped off buildings as debris was sucked up into the sky during the wild storm event.

One local took to social media on Saturday afternoon sharing a hair-raising photo of a discovery made in bushland some 80 metres from their home.

"This beam I found in the bush near my house after the Bunbury tornado," they wrote. "Speared so far into the ground that it would not budge."

The image is a remarkable reminder of how lucky the town ultimately was, with only two people taken to hospital with injuries, the ABC reported.

"Somehow almost everyone came out unscathed! The damage is a lot worse than what's being shown in news outlets currently," the local wrote. "We lost about a third of our roof ... and a heap of other damage, but the house is habitable for now."

In an apparently bizarre twist of fate, the beam "came from our family friends house," the person claimed. "The address is still written on the beam in chalk from when it was installed. Unfortunately their house was destroyed."

the beam seen sticking into the ground.
The beam was reportedly wedged firmly into the ground. Source: Reddit

On Reddit, Aussies were left stunned by the find, and expressed gratitude that so few people were hurt.

"That is insane!" one person commented while another claimed to be familiar with the type of steel beam. "I know the exact type. I install these regularly. Looks like a UB 180, prob weighs about 16kg per metre of beam," he said, suggesting the beam weighed in excess of 50kgs.

Some 1,300 properties were still without power early on Saturday, according to Emergency WA.

Authorities said about 15 young people and staff "miraculously" avoided serious injury when the tornado severely damaged the Bunbury Police and Citizens Youth Club as they gathered inside. WA's Police Minister Paul Papalia said it was "traumatic" for the children who experienced the storm. Part of the town's prison was also damaged, with about 17 prisoners to be moved to other facilities while repair works were carried out.

Bunbury's Police and Citizen's Youth Club pictured in the aftermath.
Bunbury's Police and Citizen's Youth Club was badly destroyed as people sheltered inside. Source: ABC

Resident Andrew Della-Sale was stuck in his car with his son and brother and filmed the wild storm, saying "there was a sense of panic" on the road.

"We just about drove into fallen power lines on the road. And there were other people on the other side screaming out of the car saying stop. And then we noticed the power lines in the water," he told the ABC.

Broken trees and sheets of metal seen strewn across the wet road.
Locals said there was panic on the roads on Friday. Source: Facebook

Residents have been told to watch out for powerlines, fallen trees and other hazards including potential asbestos around a sporting complex.

Department of Fire and Emergency Services District Superintendent Andy Wright said Saturday that about 120 requests for assistance were made following the tornado and authorities had attended about one in three of those jobs.

"The long-term effects of this will probably go for months," he said.

Meanwhile local MP Don Punch described it as "traumatic" for the town. "It's left people unable to go to their homes and it's caused a lot of anxiety and distress I know for a lot of people in our community," he said.

with AAP

Do you have a story tip? Email:

You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube.