The Latest: Army investigating after training jump injuries

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — The Latest on an Army training parachute accident (all times local):

5 p.m.

The Army is investigating a night parachute training accident that injured 32 soldiers, four of them seriously enough to need hospitalization.

Col. Christopher Landers is commander of the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division. He says injuries during training jumps are fairly common. But he says the scale of this accident is fairly rare, with 87 soldiers blown into trees.

He says he knows of about a half-dozen accidents with large numbers of solders ending up in trees during his career, and each had a different cause.

Landers said the last soldier was brought down about 8 a.m. Thursday but equipment was still being retrieved that afternoon.

A town hall for paratroopers and their families will be held at the Alaska base where the brigade combat team is based.


3:30 p.m.

Authorities say four of the 32 soldiers injured in a night parachute exercise in Mississippi have been admitted to a hospital.

Forrest General Hospital trauma medical director Dr. Duncan Donald says most were hurt trying to get out of trees in the dark and falling to the ground.

Army officials say about 650 soldiers based in Alaska were jumping into Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center and 87 of them were blown into trees. A news release says 32 were injured.

Donald says five soldiers had fractured vertebrae, but their spinal cords were OK. He says all should be fully recovered within three months.


This item has been corrected to show that the total number of soldiers jumping was 650, and 87 were blown into trees.


2:20 p.m.

Officials say 32 parachuting soldiers were injured and 18 of them hospitalized during a night exercise in Mississippi, and one suffered a broken back.

Officials say about 650 soldiers based in Alaska were jumping in to open a 10-day training exercise at Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center, and 87 of them were blown into pine trees. A news release says 32 were injured.

Lt. Col. Matthew Myer is commander of the Army first parachute battalion. He wrote on Facebook that 87 soldiers were blown into trees. He said the soldier with the spinal injury was among 18 who “required care,” and are all expected to recover. He says spinal surgery was a success and the soldier “is expected to recover well.”


2 a.m.

At least 22 soldiers training at a Mississippi military base have been injured during a night parachuting exercise.

U.S. Army spokesman John Pennell tells WDAM-TV that at least 15 people hurt at Camp Shelby were treated by medics and another seven were hospitalized. Staff Sgt. John Healy says none of the injuries are considered to be life-threatening. Camp Shelby Cmdr. Col. Bobby Ginn says the troopers belong to the 4th Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division stationed at the Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska.

Pennell says about 89 paratroopers were on the plane for the Wednesday night exercise. Healy says about 650 soldiers were involved in the exercise. About 3,000 troops from the Alaska base are at monthlong training at Camp Shelby called “Operation Arctic Anvil.”

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