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Wednesday, 23 October 1912

Senator PEARCE - The answers to the honorable senator's questions are -

In the event of telegraphic communication with Perth being interrupted, arrangements have been made for the interchange of weather reports between Coast Stations in the North-west; and should indications of the approach of a willy-willy be noted, information will be sent from town to town. Proposals are being considered for the linking up by telegraph of some of the more important vantage points at present without ready means of communication, such as Cape Levique, Cape Bossut, and La Grange Bay, and the State Government are being consulted as to whether they will share the cost in view of the benefit to settlement. Arrangements are also being made for the explosion of bomb signals at various points on the Northwest coast to advise pearlers and others of the approach of a willy-willy.

Senator LYNCH - Arising out of the reply given to my question, I wish to ask whether the Federal Government propose to wait to see what the State Government of Western Australia will do towards giving financial assistance in the work of connecting the ports referred to, and whether any action on their part will depend upon what the State Government may decide to do in the matter ?

Senator PEARCE - The answer given to the honorable senator's question states clearly that the State Government of Western Australia are being consulted as to whether they will share in the cost of the work in view of the benefit to settlers. If they decline to do so, it will be for the Commonwealth Government to decide whether they will do the work themselves. We do not propose to consider that proposition until we are up against it.

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