'Intelligence lessons to be learned' from soldier's death

A coroner investigating the death of a soldier in Afghanistan said today there were "lessons to be learned" about intelligence-sharing among troops on the ground.

Coroner Rob Turnbull told the inquest at Richmond Town Hall, North Yorkshire, that information concerning the compound in which Serjeant Phillip Scott, 30, of 3rd Battalion The Rifles, was killed by an explosion may have been of assistance before his platoon entered it.



Sjt Scott was killed by an improvised explosive device near Sangin in Helmand Province on November 5 last year.



He left behind his widow, Ellen, who was present at the inquest, and young children, Ellie and Michael.



His parents, Mike Scott and Diane Carr, were also at Richmond Town Hall today.



On the day of his death, Sjt Scott was acting as Section Commander of section two of his platoon, which had split into three parts, with orders to find and identify suitable compounds for future use.



It was in one of these compounds, which had been swept by four metal detectors, that the explosion happened.



It later emerged that members of 2 Rifles had been in the area on a previous occasion and had experienced a similar incident but the information had not been circulated.



Mr Turnbull's comments came in response to evidence heard from Serjeant Lee Slater, Section Commander, Recce Platoon, 3rd Battalion The Rifles, who was asked by Sjt Scott's father if he had been concerned by blood stains inside the compound and a tail fin from a mortar.



Sjt Slater told the hearing: "I did not see the blood on the walls.



"There was a field dressing wrapper - it's like a crisp wrapper - but there was no evidence that someone had been hurt in there."



Captain Toby Hood, Recce 2 Commander, 3rd Battalion The Rifles, told the inquest that they were not unduly worried by their findings as there were often frequent discoveries of the "detritus of war".



Recording a verdict of unlawful killing, Mr Turnbull said he was satisfied that the operation was "well run, well led and well equipped" and that all the troops involved could not have acted more properly.



He added: "I do, however, note the fact that there was within the compound certain items - a field dressing, part of a tail fin from a mortar - which may have been, and I emphasis may have been, a cause for concern.



"It's a point of note that there had been a previous incident, it emerged, in this compound and that information about that may have been of assistance to those carrying out this operation on the 5th of November."



He also agreed to a request from Mr Scott to put a letter together regarding the necessity of information sharing.



Mr Turnbull added: "There may be lessons to be learned, sadly too late for Serjeant Scott, but for other people in future."



Earlier, Cpt Hood described the movements of the platoon on the day of Sjt Scott's death.



He told the hearing that when the platoon reached the compound, section one entered first, swept the entirety of it with metal detectors and then ordered section two in, who did the same.



He was standing on a staircase, which at least half the men inside the compound had travelled up or down, and talking to Sjt Scott when the explosion happened.



Cpt Hood told the inquest: "Mid-conversation there was an explosion and I found myself in a heap at the foot of the stairs.



"My initial fear was that there had been an explosion on the roof. Due to the number of people on the roof I feared, initially, that there may have been many casualties if the roof had collapsed in the rooms underneath."



He also said that medics gave Sjt Scott immediate attention before he was taken by helicopter to Camp Bastion hospital.



Mr Turnbull told the inquest that a post-mortem exam found Sjt Scott died as a result of blast injuries caused by an explosion.



Cpt Hood was asked by Mr Scott what might have caused the explosion, to which he replied: "I'm not an expert in IEDs but it seems consistent perhaps with low-level content that if four vallons [metal detectors] could not pick it up then it's something as a platoon that we aren't equipped to detect."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
News
Nick Clegg on the campaign trail in Glasgow on Wednesday; he says education is his top priority
peopleNick Clegg remains optimistic despite dismal Lib Dem poll ratings
Arts and Entertainment
Déjà vu: David Tennant returns to familiar territory with Anna Gunn (‘Breaking Bad’)
tvReview: Something is missing in Gracepoint, and it's not just the familiar names
Arts and Entertainment
Buttoned up: Ryan Reynolds with Helen Mirren in ‘Woman in Gold’
filmFor every box-office smash in his Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. Now he says it's time for a reboot
News
people
News
Actress Julianne Moore wins the Best Actress in a Leading Role Award for 'Still Alice' during the 87th Annual Academy Awards in Hollywood, California
people
Sport
Ross Barkley
footballPaul Scholes says it's time for the Everton playmaker to step up and seize the England No 10 shirt
News
'We will fix it': mice in the 1970s children’s programme Bagpuss
science
Life and Style
2 Karl Lagerfeld and Choupette
fashion
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Accounts Office Administrator

£15000 - £16500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The ideal candidates will have ...

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer

£22000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper

£23000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing boutique prac...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Executive

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

War with Isis

Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

A spring in your step?

Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?