South West Wales

Pembroke Chevron oil refinery blast inquests adjourned

L-R: Julie Schmitz, Dennis Riley, Robert Broome, Andrew Jenkins
L-R: Julie Schmitz, Dennis Riley, Robert Broome, Andrew Jenkins all died at the Chevron oil refinery

Inquests have opened on four people killed in an explosion and fire at the Chevron refinery in Pembrokeshire.

Julie Schmitz (nee Jones), 54, a fire guard from Pembroke, died with three men from Milford Haven.

They were Dennis Riley, 52, Robert Broome, 48, and Andrew Jenkins, 33.

The inquests were opened and adjourned at Milford Haven Town Hall by the Pembrokeshire coroner. The full hearing will not be held until an official inquiry has finished.

The hearing on Monday was told the four victims were formally identified by their DNA.

Investigations are continuing into the cause of the explosion on 2 June, which Chevron said happened while a storage tank was being taken out of service for maintenance.

Chevron, which has flown in experts from the US, has said the investigation will be a lengthy process.

Meanwhile, police are continuing to work with the Health and Safety Executive and forensic experts at the scene.

First Minister Carwyn Jones visited the refinery last week, when he met emergency workers and staff and thanked them for their work in the aftermath of the blast.

The funerals of the three men will be held separately next week.

Mr Jenkins's funeral will be on Monday, 20 June, at St David's Church, Hubberston (1100 BST), Mr Riley's on Tuesday, 21 June at St Clement's Church, Neyland, (1400 BST), and Mr Broome's on Wednesday, 22 June, at Parc Gwyn Crematorium, Narberth, (1515 BST).

The details of Ms Schmitz's funeral have not yet been made public.

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