NZ soldier dies during training

UPDATED: A New Zealand soldier has died during a training exercise off the Coromandel Peninsula.

The Defence Force has confirmed a member of the Special Operations Force died during maritime counter-terrorism training this morning.

A witness at Port Jackson says he saw a soldier brought on shore at Port Jackson in an inflatable boat this morning accompanied by about 15 people wearing black, some of them armed.

He says he saw ambulances arrive and paramedics worked for about 90 minutes to try to revive the soldier.

The soldiers had been training on a boat off Channel Rock, near Cape Colville, he says.

He was told that the soldier had fallen.

The soldier's next of kin have been informed, and a family liaison officer has been assigned.

Police have also been been informed, the Defence Force said.

Previous training deaths

The Defence Force pleaded guilty in 2013 to a charge of failing to take all practicable steps to ensure the safety of Private Michael Ross during a training exercise.

The 29-year-old drowned when he fell from an inflatable boat into a small lake within the Army's Waiouru Military Camp, in September 2012.

An inquiry found a series of failings contributed to his death.

In 2010, an Air Force helicopter crash on Anzac Day killed three servicemen at Pukerua Bay, north of Wellington.

The Defence Force pleaded guilty to failing to provide a safe workplace in a private prosecution taken by the sole survivor.

A court of inquiry into that tragedy found there was a culture of rule-breaking in the Air Force.

EARIER:

EARLIER:

A New Zealand soldier has died during a training exercise off the Coromandel Peninsula.

The Defence Force has confirmed a member of the Special Operations Force died during maritime counter-terrorism training this morning.

The soldier's next of kin have been informed, and a family liaison officer has been assigned.

Police have also been been informed, says the Defence Force says.

"The New Zealand Defence Force can confirm that a member of the Special Operations Force has died during a maritime counter-terrorism training exercise off the Coromandel Peninsula this morning," the NZDF says in a statement released today.

"The next of kin have been informed, and a family liaison officer has been assigned.

"Our thoughts are with the soldier’s family and friends, and the NZDF requests that their privacy is respected at this difficult time."

...more soon

-RNZ

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