A massive explosion that killed one man and left 40 households homeless is believed to have been caused by fuel stored in a flat.
The inquest today (May 4) into 48-year-old Guido Schuette, whose body was identified nearly three weeks after the Osney Mead blast, was told about the fuel by emergency services.
He was the only person to die in the blast that flattened a three-storey block of flats in the Osney Lane and Gibbs Crescent area, west of Oxford city centre, at 4.45pm on February 14.
At the inquest opening at County Hall, Oxfordshire coroner Darren Salter said: “The position we are in is that the coroner’s office is still waiting for the final police report and to find the cause of death.
“But I’m informed the cause of the explosion is believed to be due to fuel stored in one of the flats.”
Mr Salter added that Mr Schuette, who was in his Gibbs Crescent flat at the time of the explosion, was “suffering some mental health issues”.
Search teams discovered his body on February 18, four days after the Valentine’s Day blast, and police said on February 20 that a post-mortem examination proved ‘inconclusive’.
The authorities eventually confirmed the body was that of Mr Schuette on March 6.
With investigations ongoing, no date for the full inquest has been set.