Military fined after fatal accident

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The Norwegian military was ordered to pay a fine of NOK 10 million after a soldier was killed during exercises last fall. Nineteen-year-old Christina Rødstøl died after being run over by a tank driven by another young recruit who couldn’t see her.

Members of the dead soldier's company taking part in a memorial after the accident last October. PHOTO: Forsvaret

Police investigating the accident determined that the military was negligent in failing to train the tank crew properly, control the exercise or take into consideration the “blind spots” the crew can encounter in the tank.

No individuals involved in the accident were fined, after police determined that none could be directly blamed for Rødstøl’s death.

The young soldier from Langhus in Akershus County was taking part in military exercises at the Rødsmoen field in Rena, eastern Norway. She was standing behind the tank when its crew was led to believe it was under fire, and thus needed to suddenly reverse. Rødstøl was in the driver’s blindspot and she was run over.

Army inspector Per Sverre Opedal confirmed to newspaper Aftenposten that other soldiers could have been killed as well. He called it a “tragic accident” that the Army regrets “in the strongest of terms.” 

“We are responsible for a death, and it’s a responsibility I, as general inspector, assume,” he said.

Views and News staff