York & North Yorkshire

'Lessons' call at Malton soldier death inquest

Serjeant Phillip Scott
Image caption Sjt Scott was acting as Section Commander when he died

A coroner investigating the death of a soldier in Afghanistan said there may be "lessons to be learned" about intelligence sharing among troops.

Serjeant Phillip Scott, 30, of Malton, North Yorkshire, was killed in an explosive clearance operation in a compound in Sangin on 5 November.

An inquest heard that information about the compound may have helped his platoon before they entered it.

Coroner Rob Turnbull recorded a verdict of unlawful killing.

Sjt Scott, of 3rd Battalion The Rifles, 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.

Similar incident

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

Sjt Scott, who leaves a wife and two children, had been serving in Afghanistan with his brother, Robin.

The inquest was held at Richmond Town Hall in North Yorkshire on Tuesday.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said: "We have recognised there are lessons to be learnt regarding the need for accurate and up-to-date information to be circulated among troops in Afghanistan at all levels.

"We are already implementing a number of initiatives, such as central information databases, and will respond fully to the coroner in due course."

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