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One minute’s silence as a mark of respect for the 39 victims of the Zeebrugge container / Grays tragedy

Just over a week on from the tragic incident in Grays, emergency services workers and public servants from across the County and across the World have come together to observe a minute’s silence.

This took place at 11am today (Friday 1st November) as a mark of respect for the 39 people who were sadly found dead in a container in the Waterglades Industrial Park on Wednesday 23rd October.

Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, joined Essex Police in observing the silence at the Essex Police Headquarters. Jane Gardner, Deputy Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, joined Essex County Fire and Rescue Service colleagues at Kelvedon Park.

Mr Hirst said: “Our emergency services do an amazing job and I would like to pay tribute to all of their hard work over the last week under such difficult circumstances. As I have spoken to people across Essex the outpouring of sympathy for the victims, their families and loved ones has been truly heartfelt. I also want to recognise the commitment shown by all of those involved to make sure the victims are treated with respect and dignity. It is now for all of us to support our officers and ensure those responsible for this horrendous crime are brought to justice.”


Essex Police Chief Constable BJ Harrington said: “Last week our County was shaken by this harrowing event. Our thoughts continue to be with all those who have lost their lives, and also with their loved ones.

“To the families of those who died, I promise that we will do everything in our power to bring justice to all those who were responsible for the horrific journey that brought your loved ones to our shores.”

He also paid tribute to everyone who either responded to the tragedy in the first few days, or who is currently working on the ongoing investigation.

Chief Constable Harrington said: “So many dedicated men and women are doing an amazing job in the most horrific of circumstances. Some of our officers went out on duty that night, not knowing what they would have to experience. They are ordinary people doing an extraordinary job, and I am immensely proud of them.”

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Rick Hylton said: “Last week our county was shaken by the harrowing events of 39 people being found dead in a lorry container in an industrial unit in Grays.  Our thoughts remain with all those who lost their lives and with their families.  I want to pay tribute to all of the agencies that responded to this horrific incident last Wednesday morning, and indeed those that continue to work on the ongoing investigation.

“Today provides us with an opportunity to pay our respects to those that lost their lives, to provide support to our colleagues who attended this tragic incident and worked in the most horrendous of circumstances and to reflect on the impact this event has had on our communities.”

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PFCC for Essex, Kelvedon Park, London Road, Rivenhall, Witham, Essex, CM8 3HB
01245 291600

If your enquiry relates to operational policing or a crime please contact Essex Police

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