Fieldcraft Incident and the Death of a Cadet

Coroner’s report:

There was no evidence during the course of the inquest that there was a real prospect that David’s death could have been avoided.


interesting that there is a recommendation for a "defibrillators on cadet training exercises."
Having mentioned this in passing to Sqn Ldr Knowles at the Airborne march (last weekend) he said that a due to the condition that the boy had a defib would only have made the situation worse.

personally if we are going to have defibs in the field then why not elsewhere too? a Sqn sports night is just as vigorous an activity as a “greens exercise”.

i wait with interest what the other recommendations are and what impact it will have on our activities given some actions have already been taken…

Regardless of these specific circumstances, I do not believe that any reasonable medical risk assessment for an activity being run for a generic group of teenagers would rate the risk of cardiac arrest in the participants significant enough to warrant the immediate availability of an AED. The staff, perhaps yes, but not the teenage participants.

If the ACO do think that the recommendations for a defib on training exercises is warranted then I see no particular reason why that will not mean that every unit is provided with an AED, with WHQs and RHQs holding a handful of spare units too,

If the ACO thought having an AED on every unit was a good idea the cost would be passed (like everything else in the last dozen years) to CWCs with the usual caveat a you must buy this or else.
Corps can’t even manage to supply every squadron with resus mannekins, associated maintenance kits and FA training packs (like I get on FAAW courses), despte making First Aid training compulsory, so an AED for every squadron would be pie in the sky.

Considering the “risk assessment” for health issues relating to cadets, i would suggest that carrying a defib would be a no-go.

What is interesting relates to details quoted in the linked report:

In the months before the trip, David’s PE teacher raised concerns about his falling fitness levels and his parents took him to hospital, the inquest was told.

When I get to a PC I’ll split this thread from ACFTIs to a separate inquest thread. Carry on here for now.

The news report says that several recommendations were made, however only the AED is mentioned, are these other recommendations in the public domain?

Interesting that one of the changes in the new ACFTIs is that the Staff/Cadet Ratio has been reduced, although the previous ration not being maintained appears to be heavily referenced in the report

If you know where to look, you can see the corps started investigating supplying AEDs and training a number of months ago.

Is it related?

Our wing as a proper AED and they also have a training AED. I have a training AED at the unit to get people accustomed to asking for it.

Although no training is needed to use a modern AED, there is benefit to having become familiar with the things and it would be great if we could ensure that training AEDs (and authority to properly train people in their use) wre available to every unit or YFA/HeartStart trainer.

I don’t believe in coincidences. Project started on 17/4/15 on instructions of the boss.

Come on Prune let us in on the secret, you’re such a tease.

Given HQACs record on project delivery means at least 2018/19, with edicts and diktats for staff to comply by 2 years previous with the purchase and maintenance costs dumped onto squadrons.

We have 3 AEDs around our site and everyone was given a 30 minute “this is what you do” chat. We have several in the local community bolted to walls and iirc Boots and M&S have them in the majority of their shops, available for everyone to use. So training as such isn’t required.

Nothing more to add. Someone’s been tasked with getting the figures and case put together. That’s all.

Quick search on SharePoint finds the details that Prune refers to can be found here [SharePoint Login Required]

I was there too. Bit wet, wasn’t it?

Priority low, start date 29 Jan 15 - end date 31 Mar 15 and nothing to imply any outcome. Says it all really. I wish projects were that easy at work.

It’s a scoping exercise. Not an implantation project. And that’s a tracker, not a full audit of the progress.

wetter than an otters pocket!


funny you say that…seems CAC thought exactly the same based on the email embeeded in that link themajor shared!

I have split this topic to cover the inquest and subsequent recommendations. Please remember it is a sensitive subject and take care with your replies.

Per Ardua

With regards to AED being recommended,
The HSE guidelines for the past 4/5years is that where strenuous physical activity is taking place with about 20 or more people then availabilty of an AED should be considered.
It’s being pushed in building sites, gyms etc so I think the cadets would be a logical progression to this school of thought hence why the coroner has recommended it.