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SAS inquest: Not all checkpoints had water resupply

Reservists who took part in a special forces training march in Wales in which three servicemen died have told the inquest that they weren't aware that not all checkpoints would have water to replenish their drinking bottles, despite the excessive heat that day.

'Soldier 1W' says that some of the check-points on the route lacked any water supplies from which the soldiers could refill - despite several talks about heat exhaustion and dehydration prior to the trek.

The soldier - who cannot be named for security reasons also said his nose started to bleed and he became dizzy during the march over Pen-Y-Fan in the Brecon Beacons National Park. A fellow soldier helped him and asked some civilian walkers for water.

SAS inquest: It was commonplace to 'battle on'

One of the four reservists who was hospitalised during an SAS march has told the inquest into the deaths of three of his colleagues that he "pressed on" despite feeling unwell in the hot conditions so he wouldn't be removed from the excersise.

The SAS man, who can only be described by the code Soldier 1X, said it was commonplace to feel low at some point during exercises, but he had always "battled on".

ITV News Midlands Reporter Ben Chapman is at the inquest:


Reservist describes collapse on SAS march

One of four reservists who were hospitalised during an SAS march told the inquest into three colleagues' deaths how he was found unconscious by civilian walkers near south Wales' highest peak after becoming overwhelmed by the heat.

While giving evidence from a screened-off witness box constructed specifically to protect military witnesses' identity, the soldier was referred to by the cipher 1X.

A stream in the Brecon Beacons. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire

Explaining how he came to be found unconscious, 1X told the inquest: "I felt like I was just going to collapse there and then."

The soldier lost consciousness and was found by walkers who activated his emergency alarm to summon help.

The reservist was airlifted to hospital shortly after 6pm, having set off at around 7.40am.

"There wasn't a trace of wind at all that day and I didn't manage to cool down as I'd expect," the soldier told the coroner.

Asked by the coroner for his view as to why he had become overwhelmed by the heat, the soldier answered: "I think I just pushed myself too hard to be honest."

Before the march candidates were given a presentation on the effects of heat illness on "others and yourself" the soldier said.

Family told SAS march went ahead 'to save paperwork'

An Army officer told a grieving family it would have been "too much paperwork" to cancel a special forces test march which led to three deaths, a coroner has heard.

The unnamed commanding officer allegedly made the remark to relatives of Lance Corporal Craig Roberts.

ITV News Correspondent Rupert Evelyn is at the inquest in Birmingham.


Families tell inquest of dead soldiers' SAS hopes

An inquest into the deaths of three soldiers during a gruelling SAS test in 2013 has heard from their families, as they talk about the men's hopes of joining 'the best of the best.'

SAS training death witnesses to give evidence behind a screen

An inquest into the deaths of three Army reservists who collapsed during an SAS training exercise in 2013 will ensure the "full facts are brought to light", the coroner said.

ITV News Corespondent Rupert Evelyn is at the inquests:

Inquest into soldiers' SAS training deaths to start

An inquest into the deaths of three Army reservists who collapsed during an SAS training exercise in 2013 is due to begin today.

Lance Corporal Edward Maher, Lance Corporal Craig Roberts and Corporal James Dunsby died after taking part in the military exercise on Pen Y Fan in the Brecon Beacons, in Wales.

Lance Corporal Edward Maher, Corporal James Dunsby and Lance Corporal Craig Roberts. Credit: MoD/ Joe Giddens/PA Wire

L/Cpl Roberts, 24 and from Penrhyn Bay, Conwy, was pronounced dead on the mountainside, while L/Cpl Maher and Cpl Dunsby, both 31, were taken to hospital.

L/Cpl Maher died three hours later in Merthyr Tydfil's Prince Charles Hospital while Cpl Dunsby, from Bath, Somerset, was transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, where he died on July 30.

The hearing was delayed to allow the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to review its decision not to bring criminal charges of gross negligence manslaughter over the deaths.

A number of other soldiers taking part in the exercise on July 13, when temperatures hit 29C (84F), also collapsed and needed medical attention.

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