Feeds

Northgate, Dixons rocked by oil depot blast

3Com hit too

Boost IT visibility and business value

The HQ of IT services outfit Northgate Information Solutions has been seriously damaged following yesterday's massive blast at the Buncefield oil depot in Hemel Hempstead.

Four Northgate employees were on-site at the time of the explosion which happened shortly after 6.00am Sunday morning, blowing out windows for miles around and sending a massive plume of black acrid smoke into the air.

All four are safe. Three of the four were taken to hospital but have since been discharged.

In a statement the IT company, which provides software and IT services for HR and public sector groups, said: "The fabric of the building and the fixtures and equipment inside have been badly damaged.

"The back-up systems that were in place have also been rendered inoperable. Northgate's ability to service its customers has therefore been temporarily affected.

"As a result, its well developed and previously rehearsed business continuity plan has been initiated. This will allow Northgate to restore its services using remote data centres and the other offices that Northgate has around the country."

Elsewhere, electronics retailer DSG International - which trades as Dixons, Currys and PC World - has also closed its Hemel Hempstead HQ following yesterday's blast. It reports that all staff are safe and that there has been "no disruption to trading" with "all stores and business systems operational".

"DSGi runs its central UK administrative functions from offices adjacent to the Hemel Hempstead oil refinery. These offices have been closed on the instructions of the authorities and under the company's contingency plans central business functions are being run from alternative sites," it said in a statement.

3Com - the voice and data networking outfit - also has its European HQ in Hemel Hempstead and has "no report of any employee casualties or injuries". It has already activated back-up systems and "anticipates minimal impact on its customers as it works to restore full business operations". Some 300 people work at the site, which is just a quarter of a mile from the oil depot.

Fashion e-tailer ASOS's warehouse was damaged by the fire, the company said today. Trading in ASOS's shares has been suspended and the company has suspended its website until it ascertains the extent of the damage.

24 hours after the initial explosions fire crews have now been given the thumbs up to start tackling the giant inferno. ®

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.