Singapore soldier dies in training accident
AN OVERSEAS soldier has died after sustaining critical injuries in an armoured vehicle crash during a military training exercise near Rockhampton.
Singaporean 3rd Sergeant Chan Hiang Cheng Gavin, 21, was guiding a Bionix Infantry Fighting vehicle out of difficult terrain at the Shoalwater Bay Training Area when it tipped over at about 8.15pm Friday.
Sgt Chan was found unconscious next to the vehicle and a medic tried to resuscitate him before he was evacuated by helicopter to the Rockhampton Hospital.
The Singapore Ministry of Defence last night confirmed Sgt Chan “succumbed to his injuries” in the early hours of yesterday.
The driver and two other passengers travelling in the armoured vehicle were not injured. The death follows last month’s US military helicopter crash in which three marines died.
Their MV-22 Osprey had been on its final approach to the USS Green Bay off Shoalwater Bay when the crash occurred.
Sgt Chan was one of more than 5000 Singapore Armed forces personnel currently in Queensland to participate in “Exercise Wallaby,” which is the country’s major annual unilateral training activity.
Australian Defence Minister Marise Payne extended her condolences to Sgt Chan’s family, who arrived in Queensland yesterday.
“Australia and Singapore have a deep and enduring defence relationship and our thoughts are with Singapore at this time,” she said.
Ms Payne said no Australian Defence Force members or vehicles were involved in the incident.
The Singapore Ministry of Defence announced a “safety pause” on training in Shoalwater Bay Training Area pending an investigation.