Paras count impact injuries

A PARATROOPER suffered compacted vertebrae and 43 others were hurt, some with broken limbs, when 412 British soldiers jumped from 800ft over Sardinia in a Nato exercise named 'Dynamic Impact', writes Christopher Bellamy.

The soldier who injured his back was among six treated in the Cambridge Military Hospital, Aldershot, but the Army said no one had been 'seriously' injured. The 5th Airborne Brigade, based in Aldershot, will be analysing the results of the exercise last Saturday but there will be no formal board of inquiry, an Army spokesman said.

Last night the unusually large casualty rate - 10 per cent - was partly blamed on the 'hardness of the ground'. In a drop on Thursday 6 out of 65 soldiers were hurt.