PTSD £375k Payout after misfire

#1
Telegraph:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/11/17/usoldier117.xml


Soldier in Iraq awarded £375,000 for stress
By PA
Last Updated: 9:48am GMT 17/11/2006



A soldier serving in Iraq has been awarded £375,000 compensation for post-traumatic stress after witnessing the serious injury of a colleague.


The soldier is the first in Iraq to receive compensation for trauma
The serviceman was with three other soldiers when an anti-tank missile went wrong and misfired, causing one of the soldiers to lose an arm.

The injured party is thought to have received substantial recompense while the other three claimed mental stress.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said compensation was paid to the unnamed soldier because the incident in April 2003 did not take place while fighting the enemy.

The outcome of the two other claims has yet to be decided.

advertisementThe payout is thought to be the first trauma-related compensation for a soldier in Iraq.

The defence spokesman said: "The MoD can confirm that £375,000 was paid to a soldier who witnessed a colleague being seriously injured when a 94mm light anti-tank rocket malfunctioned.

"The MoD is liable as the weapon was deficient and the accident occurred in a non-combat situation."
 
#2
I know it says that the injured party received substantial recompense, but how much was it? Was it more than £375,000, or was it paid from his personal accident insurance? Fortunately I haven't had to witness an oppo losing body parts however it seems like a huge amount of money for witnessing an incident, the likes of which are seen frequently by emergency services.
 
#3
I thinbk that the last line of the quote is the vital one here.

It is not so much a PTSD case as one of culpable negligence.
Hence the award. However, if the weapon had malfunctioned in combat,
would the MoD still be responsible?

I think this case may raise a lot more questions yet, but one of the most important, is whether this was an out of court settlement, or a ruling
creating a precident?

Let's hope more details are available later!
 
#4
Will Gordon deduct this kind of payment from the Annual Defence Vote?
 
#5
Horridlittleman said:
I know it says that the injured party received substantial recompense, but how much was it? Was it more than £375,000, or was it paid from his personal accident insurance? Fortunately I haven't had to witness an oppo losing body parts however it seems like a huge amount of money for witnessing an incident, the likes of which are seen frequently by emergency services.
The difference between a member of the emergency services seeing injuries, and a soldier seeing it happen to someone he knows is the critical aspect here. PTSD is described as a normal reaction to an abnormal event. Broadly, an something that is outside the usual experience and training of an individual may constitute a critical incident in terms of traumatic stress. So, a paramedic may be fine dealing with RTAs and other 'routine' incidents, but attending a major incident with many serious casualties could be a critical incident.

Whilst the compensation may seem like a lot, it's not for witnessing the incident, it's because the soldier will have to live with PTSD for the rest of his days. I suspect he'd gladly give it up in exchange for a normal life.
 
#6
Same story is in the Times.

The MoD settled the case out of court. An official said that the incident occurred in a “non-combat situation”.
Had the weapon been fired during a military operation, the case might have had a different outcome because the MoD had “combat immunity”.
story

They're not liable even if a weapon is faulty? Balls.
 
#7
so how come there are no pay-outs for soldiers in combat conditions whom are likely to se far worse, no disrespect to the soldier in question but what the feck did he think he might see when being mobilised for Iraq, clowns and fcuking teddy bears??
 
#8
geo7863 said:
so how come there are no pay-outs for soldiers in combat conditions whom are likely to se far worse, no disrespect to the soldier in question but what the feck did he think he might see when being mobilised for Iraq, clowns and fcuking teddy bears??
PTSD has been discussed at length elsewhere on ARRSE; if you do a search you will doubtless learn why you are making yourself look like foolish with statements like the one above.
 
#9
Story by PA News courtesy of Daily Telegraph Online.

'Soldier in Iraq awarded £375,000 for stress'

A soldier serving in Iraq has been awarded £375,000 compensation for post-traumatic stress after witnessing the serious injury of a colleague....

The serviceman was with three other soldiers when an anti-tank missile went wrong and misfired, causing one of the soldiers to lose an arm.

The injured party is thought to have received substantial recompense while the other three claimed mental stress.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said compensation was paid to the unnamed soldier because the incident in April 2003 did not take place while fighting the enemy.

The payout is thought to be the first trauma-related compensation for a soldier in Iraq.

The defence spokesman said: "The MoD can confirm that £375,000 was paid to a soldier who witnessed a colleague being seriously injured when a 94mm light anti-tank rocket malfunctioned.

"The MoD is liable as the weapon was deficient and the accident occurred in a non-combat situation."
Of interest, MoD did not contest liability in this case on the grounds of combat immunity. While the accident took place in theatre during the Iraq entry operations in April 2003, the troops involved were not directly taking part in combat at the time.
 
#10
#12
ViroBono said:
geo7863 said:
so how come there are no pay-outs for soldiers in combat conditions whom are likely to se far worse, no disrespect to the soldier in question but what the feck did he think he might see when being mobilised for Iraq, clowns and fcuking teddy bears??
PTSD has been discussed at length elsewhere on ARRSE; if you do a search you will doubtless learn why you are making yourself look like foolish with statements like the one above.
foolish really? I take it then that had the incident occured in combat by an incoming enemy missile, the guy would have probably seen the same sort of injuries to his mate and still have been eligible for compensation?

I doubt it!! so to say that because the weapon was faulty although the outcome and injuries would be undoubtedly the same this guy is eligible for compensation, sort of pisses on the PTSD suffered by guys whom have seen and experienced horrendous things in combat.

Or perhaps you are saying that I appear foolish because of my lack of compassion with those whom suffer from PTSD, foolish! why? unsympathetic! yes I certainly am.

Joining the military, especially in a teeth arm unit, sort of gives the implication that you are willing to engage in combat as your orders dictate in furtherence of your countries aims and policies.

This willingness to engage in combat sort of implies that you are willing to kill, this doesnt involve guys flopping down a la 1950's cowboy movies with no apparent injuries. I would oppose ANYONE saying that modern soldiers with access to modern media dont realise how horrific combat injuries and combat deaths can be.

Obviously NO ONE can say or predict how such experiences will affect them, but to me compensating a guy for this and not compensating his buddies whom may see exactly the same sort of thing or worse later on in actual combat is a bit two faced, and then what about the guys whom served in NI shouldnt we be retrospectively compensating them, I mean that wasnt combat in its truest sense was it.

The guy needs treatment and care to help him get over the PTSD which maybe he never will, but compensation isnt the answer unless you recompense ALL who suffer such experiences.
 
B

Biscuits_AB

Guest
#13
It's drawing the fine line between both possibilities and recognising which side the incident sits, that is the issue in these matters. Techically speaking, he has been treated the same as he would have been had the incident ocurred during field firing exercises. Fair play to him.
 
#14
Geo

The reason I considered your comment and attitude foolish is because you didn't appear to understand that it isn't about what an individual may or may not be expected to see or deal with if he joins the army. You then go on to say that no-one can predict how they'll react, you just have no sympathy.

This soldier is not being compensated because he saw something that others may also see; it's because he suffered a psychiatric injury as a result (and PTSD is classified as an injury, not an illness), the effects of which are far-reaching and which will be with him for the rest of his life.

Do you have sympathy for soldiers who incur physical injuries, or do you think that's also a foreseeable consequence of joining up? Should soldiers who lose limbs not be compensated because they are soldiers?

I do agree that it seems odd to compensate some and not others, (and whether it's due to 'real' combat or not is irrelevant - it's the individual's perception of the critical event that matters), and particularly with regard to NI. Attitudes have, thankfully, changed of late and it may be that retrospective claims will be submitted. However, MOD have persistently fought such claims.
 
#15
The bottom line is, that a serviceman is no superman - he or she has the same feelings as every other person on this island and therefore should be compensated if his employer furks up.

End of story in my books
 
#16
I must agree with Geo, i dont see his post as foolish, more realistic. As i understand it i dont think he lacks support for soldiers and the conditions in which they often find themselves, merely that as soliders we have to accept that we will be exposed to events which may cause injury both mentally and physically. In the broadest sense we chose this life and the risks and benefits that come with it.

The military convenant provides us with the expectation that all that can be done to protect the soldier is done, save when the needs of the mission outweigh the needs of the individual. The premise of unlimited liability has always been there.

Compensation will always appear unjust, we can all pick one instance where a person was compensated for one thing and another not. Remember female service personnel in the early 90's who recieved circa £120k each for being discharged when they fell pregnant, and yet injured soldiers recieved nothing due to the then crown exemption for military injuries?

But compensation for PTSD is a path fraught with problems, most of us who have served for a while can recall things that they would rather forget, why one person is affected more than another is very difficult to undertsand for most who have been through it, that doesnt mean people like Geo dont care about the issue, telling him he is foolish because he see's the issue differently and not the way you would have him see it doesnt devalue what he has to say.
 

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