15 July 2013, 18:05

UK soldiers die 'trying our for special forces'

британский военнослужащий солдат Великобритания Ирак военные действия

Two TA soldiers who died while attempting to get into the special forces were on the first day of a week-long assessment when they collapsed with suspected heat exhaustion.

Police are investigating the deaths of the two servicemen on the hottest day of the year while a third serviceman is in a serious condition in hospital.

The three were part of a group training in the Brecon Beacons, some of Wales' most rugged terrain, on Saturday when temperatures topped 29.5C (85.1F).

It is understood that the men were on the first day of a week-long assessment as part of the Territorial Army section of the SAS.

The selection process was running alongside regular SAS trials and has now been abandoned due to the deaths.

For the regular version of the special forces elite, the trials would involve a 40-mile speed march with about 55lb on their backs, including a replica rifle, normally completed over a 20-hour period.

It is likely that the process would be slightly reduced for the TA version or split up, but nevertheless gruelling.

Sky News Defence Correspondent Alistair Bunkall said the "very rigorous selection process" would have meant "long yomping walks carrying an awful lot of weight".

With military sources indicating soaring temperatures may have been to blame for their deaths, Bunkall added that the investigation into their deaths was like to focus on the climate and whether enough preparations were put in place.

Colonel Richard Kemp, former commander of British troops in Afghanistan, pointed out the difference between the selection processes for the regular Army and the special forces, where the onus is on individual achievement and self-motivation.

Voice of Russia, Sky News

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