We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Emergency services at the scene of the explosion and fire. Government of Jersey/PA
Rescue Efforts

Hopes fade for more survivors after at least three killed in Jersey flats blast

Specialist teams who spent the night combing the wreckage in St Helier said their mission is now a ‘recovery operation’.

RESCUERS SEARCHING THE scene of an explosion on the island of Jersey in which at least three people died have said they no longer expect to find anyone else alive.

Specialist teams who spent the night combing the wreckage in St Helier, on the south of the island, said their mission is now a “recovery operation”.

It came after police said they believed “around a dozen” people are missing following the blast which destroyed a block of flats at around 4am on Saturday.

Chief of Jersey Police Robin Smith said: “It is with sadness that I am confirming that the search and rescue operation had been moved to a recovery operation.


“The decision was made after a detailed assessment and following the use of specialist K9 units.

“Disaster victim identification (DVI) strategies are in place and specialist officers are surveying the scene with fire and ambulance services and tactical advisers from Urban Search and Rescue (Usar).”

Specialist teams from other parts of the UK, including the Isle of Wight and Hampshire, have been drafted in to aid the response.

Jersey Fire and Rescue Service’s chief fire officer, Paul Brown, told a press conference on Saturday that their primary challenge is navigating the “dangerous structure”.

Mr Brown also confirmed that firefighters had been called to the building at 8.36pm on Friday and had carried out investigations after residents reported smelling gas – just hours before the blast.

Chief Minister Kristina Moore said at least three people had been killed, describing the incident as an “unimaginable tragedy” for the Channel Island.

An update is expected from the government later on Sunday.

Andium Homes, a state-owned but independent company which rents out thousands of properties on the island, said it is focusing on supporting residents at the estate.

Gas supplier Island Energy said it was working with the fire service to “understand exactly what has happened”.

Press Association
Your Voice
Readers Comments
This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
Leave a Comment
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.

    Leave a commentcancel