The Ministry of Defence will be reprimanded over the deaths of three reservists who died on an SAS training exercise in the Brecon Beacons.
The MoD will be issued with a ‘Crown Censure’ by the Health and Safety Executive following the tragic deaths of Lance Corporal Craig Roberts, Lance Corporal Edward Maher and Corporal James Dunsby. All three men died after taking part in an SAS selection exercise on the hottest day of 2013.
A censure – the highest action the HSE can take – means that the MoD would have faced prosecution were it not for the principle of Crown Immunity.
Lawyers specialising in cases involving injured armed forces personnel have welcomed the censure, but remain cautious about the future if a full review of MoD safety procedures is not undertaken.
Specialist military accident solicitor, Zoe Sutton, said: “I welcome the HSE censure and the fact that the MoD has accepted it’s failings in this instance, as I was confident they would with the weight of evidence against them.
“They must now learn from this tragedy and ensure that our armed forces personnel are never again subject to such unsafe practises.”
The MoD has apologised and said it has “acknowledged” the censure.
In a statement, the HSE said: "Despite its crown status, the MoD is not exempt from its responsibilities as an employer to reduce the risks to its employees as far as reasonably practicable."