Statement on Army Training

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Senator the Hon Marise Payne

Minister for Defence

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  • Henry Budd (Minister Payne’s office) 0429 531 143
  • Defence Media (02) 6127 1999

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11 May 2017

I would like to again express my deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the two Army soldiers who recently lost their lives during training exercises.

At my request the Chief of Army Lieutenant General Angus Campbell has further briefed me this morning on recent serious incidents that have resulted in two fatalities and injuries to other personnel.

Whether on deployment or while training, the men and women of the Australian Defence Force undertake hazardous activities to ensure our safety and security.

The Australian public rightfully expects Defence to mitigate the risk of injury through the rigorous implementation of its policy and processes. The serious nature of the recent incidents require a deliberate and thorough review.

Army has currently suspended training activities across its combat brigades while it reviews its risk assessment processes and training safety management. I will seek progressive updates on the review as it is carried out.

The Army will progressively return to training over the next few days once the review is complete, and Brigade Commanders and Army leadership are satisfied that the necessary procedures and protections are in place.

I will continue to oversee the progress of the reviews, in recognition of the importance of mitigating risk for Australian Defence Force personnel on training.

Investigations by the relevant State and Territory police and coronial authorities into both fatalities are ongoing.


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