06 December 2023
The Chief Officers of Jersey’s emergency services have paid tribute to those lost in the
tragedies at Haut du Mont and on the L’Ecume II.
As we approach the first anniversaries of the two events, which occurred within 48 hours of
each other last December, the chiefs have spoken not only to remember those who lost
their lives and homes, but also to praise emergency services personnel and the other
agencies who formed part of the Island’s response.
Paul Brown, Chief Fire Officer, said: “A year on from the tragic events of last December my
thoughts and those of all the firefighters, emergency planning officers and staff of the
States of Jersey Fire and Rescue Service remain with those who were lost, their families and
friends and everyone affected.
“We know we can never truly understand the sense of loss they have experienced and we
recognise that this anniversary, while important, will be hard for them. We will never forget
their loved ones.”
Staff at the headquarters of all the Island’s emergency services will be observing a minute’s
silence at noon on Friday to mark the first anniversary of the L’Ecume II tragedy and will do
the same at noon on Sunday, in memory of those who lost their lives in the Haut du Mont
Peter Gavey, Chief Ambulance Officer, said: “As we mark the first anniversaries of the
December tragedies, we remember two dates that remain etched in our collective
memories, when our Island community faced unprecedented disasters.
“My heartfelt gratitude goes out to all our staff and our mutual aid partners for their
response. As we take time to remember the lives that were tragically taken from us, our
thoughts are with the families and loved ones of those they lost.”
States of Jersey Police Chief Officer Robin Smith also spoke of the need to remember the
lives lost and praised staff for their initial response and the ongoing investigation and
Robin Smith said: “The two major incidents which occurred within 48 hours of each other
last December were as devastating to Islanders as they were unprecedented, and they will
live long in the memory.
“From answering the first emergency call to the way we continue to handle the
investigations into what happened, SoJP officers and staff have never forgotten who they
are doing this for – the victims, their families and the many people who lost their homes –
and our thoughts are with them at what I know will be a very difficult time.
“A year on, the anniversaries also give us an opportunity to acknowledge and thank all
those who responded to the calls for help and who continue to answer that call as part of
the ongoing investigation and support work they do for the families involved in the major
incidents. They’re a credit to the Island.”