What Steps Must the MoD Take to Avoid Training Accidents?

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Gavin Hughes

Partner, Military Claims Solicitor

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Serving in the Armed Forces can be a dangerous job, and there are significant risks of accidents and injuries. By its very nature there is no army position that is completely safe, but you have the right to expect the Ministry of Defence to ensure your safety is of top priority and that risks are mitigated, as far as possible.

According to the Ministry of Defence, 61% of all accidents in 2021/2022 were due to incidents that occurred in training. Though the rate of injury reported for UK Armed Forces has decreased since 2017/18, there are, and still will be, accidents that could be life changing.

Our Military Claims Solicitors can help you claim compensation if you’ve been injured in a military training accident, or if you’ve lost a loved one whilst they were training in the British Armed Forces.

Duty of Care

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) owes a duty of care to service personnel, so it must make sure training exercises are carried out safely. For example, the MoD should make sure that:

  • Appropriate risk assessments are completed and followed
  • Training exercises are properly planned
  • Service personnel are provided with safe and suitable equipment
  • Service personnel are trained in how to use equipment safely

If you’ve been injured in a military training accident and you believe the MoD may not have taken sufficient measures to keep you safe, then you may have grounds for  a claim for compensation.

Contact our expert Military Claims Solicitors for a free claims assessment, and we’ll be happy to discuss your potential case with you and how we may be able to  help you.

We’ve helped many members of the British Armed Forces recover the compensation they deserve after suffering an injury in an accident that could have been prevented, had adequate safety measures been put in place.

We can also talk to you if you’re an Armed Forces veteran or wish to claim on behalf of a loved one who died in a military training accident. We will advise you as to whether we  can manage your case on a No Win, No Fee basis.

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MoD Training Injuries and Accidents

A career in the Armed Forces is different from many other lines of work, as service personnel expect to be placed in potentially dangerous situations, and understand they need regular training to stay in peak physical condition.

The very nature of serving in the Armed Forces means that training is physically and mentally demanding. Despite this, the MoD should still be running training exercises in a safe manner and minimising the risks of injury as much as they can.

Common causes of training injuries include:

  • Inadequate training and preparation
  • Failure of military equipment
  • Equipment not being used correctly
  • Being given incorrect or inadequate equipment
  • Not being given suitable Personal Protective Equipment
  • Inadequate preparation for the exercise, such as a failure to prepare a suitable  risk assessment

It’s the MoD’s duty to keep you safe whilst training. The impact of a training injury could mean that you can’t progress as far in your military career as you would have been able to in the absence of injury or may even result in a medical discharge. 

Accidents can be prevented

Whilst there are some aspects of military service which are inherently dangerous,  this doesn’t give a green light to the MoD to ignore the health and safety regulations that other employers have to follow. So, the circumstances resulting in  a military training accident will be benchmarked against the same standards as any other accident at work.

This means that the senior personnel conducting training exercises must make sure that they are properly controlled and risk assessed, to ensure that potential risks such as exposure to extreme temperatures can be addressed and mitigated where possible.

Proper Equipment

A key part of making sure military training exercises are carried out safely is providing the right equipment, such as boots, gloves and personal protective equipment.

The MoD must also make sure that any equipment service personnel are given is in a good condition, and has been properly maintained.

In addition, the MoD have a legal duty to provide training on how any equipment can be used safely.

Claiming Compensation for a Military Training Accident

The long-term consequences of a military training accident can be devastating and can often lead to the victim being discharged on medical grounds.

If you have been injured as a consequence of the MoD’s or service colleague’s negligence  or if you lost a loved one in a military training accident, you may have a right to claim compensation.

Our Military Claims Solicitors are specialists in this area of law, and have helped many serving Armed Forces personnel, veterans and family members secure much-needed compensation.

If we take on your case, we’ll carry out a thorough investigation to establish whether more could and should have been done to keep you or your loved one safe.

We’ll handle your claim sensitively and make sure you’re kept regularly updated, so you always know what’s going on.

Get in touch for a free claims assessment and we’ll be happy to speak with you about whether you have a viable claim for compensation – just call us on 0808 239 0244, and let us, help you.


Ministry of Defence. (2021-22). MOD Health & Safety Statistic Annual Report. Retrieved from https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/63205d1fd3bf7f33cba6279a/MOD_Health___Safety_Statistic_Annual_Report_2021-22.pdf

Ministry of Defence. (n.d.). GOV.UK - Ministry of Defence. Retrieved from https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-defence

House of Commons Library. (2023). The Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (CBP-7923). Retrieved from https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-7923/

Gavin Hughes

Partner, Military Claims Solicitor

Gavin is a Partner in our Personal Injury department and Head of the Military Accident and Injury Claims team. He also runs his own caseload of military personal injury cases.

Gavin shows a personal touch with his clients and works closely with them to achieve the best results.

He is a robust and determined litigator and has secured many six and seven-figure settlements for clients throughout his career.

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