LARGE flares have been seen at Valero Pembroke Refinery over the past few days.

Residents in the Milford Haven area have been commenting and sharing their photos of the tall flames and columns of smoke coming from the stacks at the refinery site on social media.

The refinery was among the sites hit by a major power failure across the UK on Friday, August 9.

Milford Mercury:

It is understood that the large flares this week are a result of operations returning to normal after the power cut.

Pembrokeshire County Council said: "Due to unplanned maintenance following the power outage on Friday, August 9, Valero have been restarting systems leading to visible flares. National Resources Wales are aware."

A spokesman for Valero told the Western Telegraph: "We do not comment on operational matters."

Milford Mercury:

A spokesman for Natural Resources Wales said the environmental body was aware of the unusually large flares and expected them to return to a normal size in the next few days.

The NRW spokesman said: "NRW is aware through our regulation of the Pembroke Oil Refinery of flaring at the site.

"The large flares are taking place as units start back up after the refinery lost power from the National Grid on Friday, August 9, which was a rare occurrence.

"Since the power cut, Valero had to undertake unplanned work to bring the refinery back on line.

The spokesman added: "We have been in discussions with Valero and reduced flare size is expected over the next couple of days.

"The power loss at the refinery is subject to a full investigation which is currently on-going."

After the power cut on August 9, large flares and black smoke were seen coming from the refinery's stacks.

People living in the Milford Haven area also reported foul smells they believed to be coming from the site.

The major power cut hit airports and rail networks across the UK, with blackouts reported across the South East, Midlands, South West, North East and Wales.