South East Wales

Gavin Williams inquest: Heat illness 'not recognised'

Pte Gavin Williams Image copyright PA
Image caption Pte Gavin Williams was serving with the Second Battalion of the Royal Welsh Regiment

There was no clear assessment of the risk hot weather posed when a soldier was subjected to a "beasting", an inquest has heard.

Pte Gavin Williams, 22, of Hengoed, Caerphilly county, was made to do the intensive exercise as an informal punishment.

He collapsed at Lucknow Barracks, Wiltshire, on one of the hottest days of 2006 and later died.

A heat expert said Pte Williams's heat illness symptoms were not recognised.

The inquest has previously heard Pte Williams was ordered to march and do intensive exercise in a gym as punishment for drunken behaviour and being absent without leave.

Potential risk

Ecstasy was found in his bloodstream when he died and he was likely to have been dehydrated before the "beasting", the hearing has been told.

Heat expert Dr Daniel Roiz De Sa said the hot weather risk level on the day Pte Williams died was high, and guidance suggested he should not have been exercising for more than one hour in a 90 minute period.

Previous witnesses disputed how long he was made to exercise, with some suggesting it was for over an hour.

Dr Roiz De Sa told the coroner, Judge Alan Large, there was "no clear assessment of the risk that the environment would have on the exercise of an individual" that day.

The hearing was told a doctor who treated Pte Williams on the day he died had already treated another soldier for heat related illness earlier in the day.

But no information was given to other staff to warn them of the potential risk the hot conditions might have.

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