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Jersey Police deal with 'unprecedented' four major incidents

Jersey's chief of police has praised his staff as they have been dealing with an "unprecedented number of major incidents" in a year.

They have included the death of three fishermen off St Ouen in December 2022, and the deaths of 10 people following an explosion in flats in St Helier.

The other incidents were a fatal road collision in Grouville in August and recent devastation during Storm Ciarán. Robin Smith thanked staff for their "hard work and professionalism".

He said it was "truly commendable" that his colleagues could undertake "such complex and painstaking investigations" while also responding to other calls and cases.

He added: "We are currently in a position where a force of just over 200 officers is investigating a series of incidents involving 15 unexplained deaths. "The organisation is running hot and it has been running hot for almost a year now," he said.

Incident updates:

Operation Nectar: St Ouen's Bay boats collision

Three crew on board L'Ecume II fishing boat died when it sank after colliding with a freight ferry on 8 December 2022.

  • More than 600 lines of enquiry have been completed since the start of the investigation

  • Some 202 statements have been obtained from about 138 witnesses despite a limited number of eyewitnesses to the collision

  • The Law Officers' Department will review the case, but it is expected it will take some time before any decision is made on bringing possible charges

Operation Spire: Pier Road flat explosion

Ten people died as a result of the Haut du Mont residential block explosion in St Helier on 10 December.

  • Three people have been arrested and released on bail

  • Police are awaiting results of forensic tests by the Health and Safety Executive in the UK

  • The investigation remains a joint one between States Police and the Health and Safety Inspectorate, but there are two separate criminal investigations also under way

  • Officers have been keeping bereaved families and those who lost homes informed of updates, and have been in discussions about how to deal with the first anniversary of the tragedy

Operation Doric: Fatal road traffic collision

Father and son Dean and Charlie Lowe died after they were in collision with a vehicle in Grouville on 5 August.

  • Investigations are ongoing and a suspect remains on bail

  • Work undertaken and evidence collected so far includes: 169 lines of inquiry, 504 documents, 94 statements and 414 media items

Storm Ciarán

More than 150 residents were displaced as buildings and infrastructure were heavily damaged in winds of more than 100mph earlier this month.

  • The clean-up process is still ongoing, and it will "take many years for the island to fully recover"

  • Islanders heeded advance warnings about the storm

  • Support from the community towards those affected had been "heart-warming and officers have really appreciated it"


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