Soldier receives compensation after Ministry of Defence claim
£375,000 has been awarded to a soldier after becoming the first member of the Armed Forces to successfully sue the Ministry of Defence (MoD) for suffering post-traumatic stress while serving in Iraq.
The MoD said it had accepted liability because the weapon system, a LAW 90 anti-tank rocket, had clearly been defective.
One soldier lost an arm and has been granted substantial compensation; four soldiers in total were involved in the incident when a barrel ignited.
The three others were not physically injured but all put forward claims that they had suffered post-traumatic stress after witnessing the grievous wounds to their comrade.
The MoD settled the case out of court. An official said that the incident occurred in a "non-combat situation". Had the weapon been fired during a military operation, the case might have had a different outcome because the MoD had "combat immunity".
The MoD said that there were six other claims over post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the pipeline, including the two soldiers involved in the test-firing incident.
Hundreds of soldiers returning from Iraq have been suffering from mental health problems, according to the latest official figures. Of the 1,897 cases, 278 were classed as PTSD sufferers. The figures do not include personnel who have received treatment since leaving the Armed Forces.
If you or someone you know has been injured whilst serving for the Ministry of Defence, our solicitors can help with a Ministry of Defence claim.