Live updates

Coroner: lack of preparation contributed to soldiers' deaths

Coroner Louise Hunt Credit: HM Coroner's Office

A lack of build-up marches contributed to the deaths of three army reservists who collapsed on an SAS test exercise, a coroner has said. In comments to the final day of an inquest in Solihull, Senior Birmingham Coroner Louise Hunt also ruled that checkpoint staff had missed signs of heat illness in one of those who died.

The inquest has heard that lance corporals Edward Maher and Craig Roberts were both pronounced dead on the Brecon Beacons after suffering heatstroke in July 2013. Corporal James Dunsby from Trowbridge died at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital from multiple organ failure more than two weeks after the march.

Ruling that the lack of build-up marches in the week before the march had contributed to the deaths, Ms Hunt stressed that fitness was different to conditioning and that all those who died had been "very fit".

"I consider that the risk assessment was not adequate for the march being undertaken. It failed to address the increased risk of heat illness based on the weather forecast.

"It failed to have a clear plan for how to get to and treat any heat injury casualties that occurred."

– Coroner Louise Hunt

Advertisement

Coroner's damning conclusions on Wiltshire soldier's death

Cpl James Dunsby from Trowbridge was one of three reservists to die Credit: Ministry of Defence

The coroner at the inquest into a soldier from Wiltshire who was one of three to die on an exercise in Wales has begun giving her verdict. Cpl James Dunsby from Trowbridge died from multiple organ failure and hyperthermia (overheating) on the SAS exercise in the Brecon Beacons on a hot day in July two years ago.

The Birmingham coroner Louise Hunt said the organisers of the exercise had failed to made dynamic risk assessments, gave inadequate briefings and left the reservist candidates confused as to where water would be.

The trainees were given no advice about water consumption and organisers identified the wrong hospital as being the closest for casualties. One commander admitted he did not know the day's weather forecast.

Coroner to give verdict on SAS recruit training deaths

A coroner is expected to deliver her verdict on the deaths of three soldiers who died on an SAS test march last summer.

Corporal James Dunsby from Trowbridge was one of the three men who died from heat exhaustion after taking part in the exercise on the Brecon Beacons in July 2013.

Father of soldier who died after training says he hasn't had an apology

A coroner is considering her verdict into the deaths of three reservist soldiers who died on an SAS selection exercise.

Corporal James Dunsby from Trowbridge was one of the three who was killed after overheating on the march in the Brecon Beacons in July 2013.

His father has told ITV News he hasn't had an apology, and the SAS let his son down. Alexandra Lodge met him on the route of his son's fatal march.

Father of soldier who died after training shown wrong place of son's collapse

Cpl James Dunsby died of heatstroke in July 2013, along with two other army reservists. Credit: Ministry of Defence

The father of a soldier from Trowbridge, who died after an SAS test march on the Brecon Beacons, was taken to the wrong place when he asked to see where his son had collapsed.

The error was revealed during the questioning of an SAS training officer at an inquest into the death of Corporal James Dunsby and two other reservists.

The soldier being questioned said there was "no rhyme or reason why that should have been done."

Corporal Dunsby, a trained combat medic and Afghanistan veteran, died of heatstroke in hospital in July 2013, 17 days after collapsing on the training march.

Advertisement

Hiker tried to help Trowbridge soldier before he collapsed on Brecon Beacons

James Dunsby died in July 2013, two weeks after collapsing on the Brecon Beacons. Credit: ITV News

A civilian passer-by was asked to fan down a heat-stricken Army reservist from Trowbridge who died after collapsing on an SAS test march, an inquest has heard.

The walker, who was not named at the hearing into the deaths of three reservists, was also instructed to hold the head of Corporal James Dunsby while four other soldiers carried him on a stretcher.

Cpl Dunsby, 31, died at Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital in July 2013, two weeks after collapsing on the Brecon Beacons.

Cpl Dunsby, who collapsed from heat illness near a main road, is said to have been moving "between running and a fast walk" on the final leg of the march. Another candidate for the reserve SAS, known by the codename 4Y, told the inquest earlier: "He ran on ahead, saying he could make the time. I said to him, 'I'm sorry, I can't. I can't go at that pace' and that is the last time I saw him."

In a statement read to the court by the coroner, a senior paramedic with 23 years of experience said Cpl Dunsby's temperature was the highest he had ever encountered.

The inquest continues.

Army medic didn't read guidelines for training in which three died

Corporal James Dunsby was an Afghanistan veteran, intelligence analyst and trained combat medic. Credit: Ministry of Defence

A combat medic didn't read Ministry of Defence guidelines on preventing deaths from heat injury before a fatal SAS test march.

The soldier, who cannot be named, told an inquest he hadn't "really looked" at service guidance advising that military exercises should be called off if a heat injury is diagnosed.

Corporal James Dunsby from Bath died from the effects of the heat, along with two other soldiers, during a march in boiling temperatures in the Brecon Beacons in July 2013.

The inquest continues.

At least 12 overheated during SAS training in which three died

Corporal James Dunsby was an Afghanistan veteran, intelligence analyst and trained combat medic. Credit: Ministry of Defence

At least 12 soldiers were treated for heat-related illnesses on an SAS test march in the Brecon Beacons, an inquest into the deaths of three of them has heard.

Craig Roberts, Edward Maher and James Dunsby, who was from Bath, all died from overheating in 2013.

Today the Chief Instructor of their unit said he was unaware of official military guidelines stating that even one person becoming incapacitated through heat injury should stop the activity.

Soldier describes pressure of SAS training in which three died

Cpl James Dunsby died in 2013. Credit: Ministry of Defence

A soldier who collapsed during an SAS selection process in which three died told an inquest today how he was encouraged to complete the march - despite army medics fearing he could die.

The soldier, known only as 1W, described collapsing three times after running out of water. He said he felt dizzy, weak, sick and confused - and his nose started to bleed.

Afghanistan veteran Corporal James Dunsby from Bath was also taking part on the day in 2013. He died along with two colleagues.

Cpl Dunsby's widow gave testified yesterday, on the opening day of the hearing. She told the inquest her husband, an army reservist and trained combat medic, had had an "exceptionally high level of fitness".

Load more updates