Oil depot blast disrupts OP firms


12 December 2005 – Hemel Hempstead (UK): Some office products companies in the Hemel Hempstead area will face disruption over coming days as a result of an explosion in one of Britain’s largest oil depots and a fire described as "one of the largest in peacetime Europe".

ISA Retail has been forced to close an office and regional distribution centre, a spokesperson told OPI, although added that the company has sustained minimal damage and would not be significantly affected operationally. "Although we have lost some windows and doors, we know from CCTV footage that all our products are there in the warehouse," she said. "But we will only be able to assess the real extent of the damage when the fire has been put out…Luckily our main distribution centre is run out of our national headquarters in Wakefield, Yorkshire."


The headquarters of Dixons, also in Hemel Hempstead, will remain closed for today and tomorrow. At this time, there was nobody available at Dixons to comment on the extent of the damage although Dixons owner DSG International has told the media that trade would not be affected.


More than a hundred firefighters began "a small, phased attack" on the blaze at the Buncefield complex this morning, more than 24 hours after it originally erupted. The cause of the fire is still unknown.