Written Answers. - Accident Report.

Wednesday, 8 December 1999

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 512 No. 4

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  64.  Mr. G. Reynolds  Information on Gerry Reynolds  Zoom on Gerry Reynolds   asked the Minister for Defence  Information on Michael Smith  Zoom on Michael Smith   if he has received the final report into the accident at Kilworth Ranges, County Cork in December 1997; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26310/99]

Minister for Defence (Mr. M. Smith): Information on Michael Smith  Zoom on Michael Smith  A court of inquiry was initiated immediately following the accident which occurred at Kilworth Firing Range on 9 December 1997 in which five Defence Forces personnel were injured, one seriously. The inquiry encompassed the findings of a military police investigation and a technical board of inquiry. Weapons handling training on the 60mm mortar continued but live firing for training purposes ceased pending completion of the aforementioned investigations. The report submitted [1005] to higher military authority gave rise to additional queries which could only be addressed by the re-convening of the court of inquiry and this was done. The report of the reconvened court of inquiry was submitted to me on 10 August last. As I indicated in reply to Question No. 46 on 19 October 1999, the military authorities are currently reviewing the report in order to determine what, if any, changes to drills and procedures should be made in respect of live firing with the 60mm mortar on training exercises. Until this review is completed the military authorities have continued the suspension of live firing with the 60mm mortar.


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