This morning’s top stories on the West Australian

A man is fighting for life after a train was derailed by an iron ore truck, Scott Morrison has been urged to consider psychometric testing for parliamentary staff and a girl who bit a cop avoids jail.

Here are five must-read articles from The West Australian this morning.

Mercy flight to Perth after horror train crash

Camera IconThe collision north-east of Kalgoorlie Boulder. Credit: Neil Watkinson/Kalgoorlie Miner

A train engineer is still fighting for life after more than 12 hours after a horror crash with an ore truck in the Goldfields.

Police yesterday said they believed two engineers, both 70, were the only people aboard the train when it was derailed by an MLG truck about 2km east of Kalgoorlie on Yarri Road at 5.05pm on Monday.

Read the full story here.

Scott Morrison urged to use psychometric testing for staff

Parliament House.
Camera IconParliament House. Credit: LUKAS COCH/AAPIMAGE

Scott Morrison has been urged to consider psychometric testing for staff employed in parliamentary offices.

The Prime Minister was last week written to by one of his own MPs who suggested using the employment tool to help ensure the right staff are hired who can withstand the high pressure environment of Parliament House.

Insiders told The West Australian the measure will be considered as part of a comprehensive review into the workplace culture in Parliament House.

Read the full story here.

Teenage girl who bit police officer avoids jail

the injury received by the officer.
Camera Iconthe injury received by the officer. Credit: WA Police

A 15-year-old girl who bit a police officer on the leg after taking part in two violent robberies in the Perth CBD and Northbridge has avoided any further jail time for her crime spree.

The teenager, who cannot be named due to her age, received a six-month intensive youth supervision order in the Perth Children’s Court last week after pleading guilty to two counts of aggravated robbery and assaulting a public officer.

Read the full story here.

Bushfire victims to get electricity back

Ben Vasilauskas, Metro Response Manager with some destroyed wire and poles.
Camera IconBen Vasilauskas, Metro Response Manager with some destroyed wire and poles. Credit: Simon Santi/The West Australian

Wooroloo bushfire victims will soon get their power back after a multimillion-dollar project to return them to the grid.

Hundreds of Western Power staff from across the State have worked around the clock to rebuild and upgrade the electricity network in the fire-ravaged Gidgegannup areas — with 90 per cent of poles, transformers and underground assets damaged or destroyed in the fire zone.

Western Power metro response manager Ben Vasiliauskas said the construction is due to finish by Friday, but workers have had to squeeze in a year’s worth of work into a couple of weeks.

Read the full story here.

Compulsory Year 1 phonics test considered in WA schools

Remy, 6, (pink top), Tira, 6, and Tyrus, 4 (boy).
Camera IconRemy, 6, (pink top), Tira, 6, and Tyrus, 4 (boy). Credit: Iain Gillespie/The West Australian

Education Minister Sue Ellery has left the door open to introducing a compulsory Year 1 phonics test in WA schools, saying it is something she will “look at” if the McGowan Government wins the State election next month.

As revealed in The West Australian yesterday, prominent business leaders are backing a campaign by education group Primary Focus for a controversial Year 1 “phonics check” to help stop kids leaving school with poor reading skills.

The phonics check — already mandated in NSW and South Australia — involves children reading aloud a list of 40 words to make sure they can identify and blend letter sounds.

Read the full story here.

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