Two Australian soldiers wounded by insurgent blast
28 May 2011
Two Australian soldiers are in satisfactory condition after being wounded in action when their vehicle struck an insurgent-laid Improvised Explosive Device (IED) on Wednesday, 25 May 2011.
The soldiers were part of an Afghan National Police (ANP) and Special Operations Task Group (SOTG) partnered mounted patrol in Southern Afghanistan when their Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicle struck an IED.
Chief of Joint Operations Lieutenant General Ash Power said the soldiers have recovered well from their wounds and are now being managed as outpatients at their Tarin Kot base.
“Thankfully their wounds were such that it appears they will make a full recovery,” Lieutenant General Power said.
“Their Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicle took the brunt of the blast and was significantly damaged in the explosion.”
The patrol secured the incident site, provided initial first aid to their wounded comrades and organised a casualty evacuation helicopter to extract them from the field.
Ground and air recovery options were explored for the damaged Bushmaster but the increasingly dangerous situation on the ground, the harsh terrain and high threat of further IEDs precluded the use of available recovery systems for the vehicle.
Based on the assessment by the Commander on the ground, Commander Joint Task Force 633, Major General Angus Campbell, authorised the destruction of the vehicle in place rather than to leave it for potential insurgent exploitation.
Lieutenant General Power said ongoing operations in that area of southern Afghanistan precluded earlier announcement of the casualties.
“Australian soldiers and their Afghan partners continued their operation,” Lieutenant General Power said.
“To enhance their safety on the ground we delayed the release of this information until that phase of the operation had concluded.”
The soldiers’families have been notified of the incident.
Further details of the overarching operation will not be released a this time as it remains ongoing.
Media contact: Defence Media Operations (02) 6127 1999 or 0408 498 664