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North Carolina airman killed during training exercise

A training exercise at Fort Bragg focusing on unit readiness recently went awry when a 30-year-old Senior Airman was hit and killed by a Humvee at Pope Army Airfield.

According to a news release from Fort Bragg, the fatal truck accident occurred at approximately 10:45 a.m. The man was transported to Womack Army Medical Center and pronounced dead 15 minutes later.

The Pensacola man had been assigned to the 43rd Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron at Pope Army Airfield and was an aeromedical evacuation technician. He had only been in that location since May, having previously served in California at Travis Air Force Base in the capacity of an aerospace medical service technician.

His untimely death marks the third fatal accident that occurred this year on Fort Bragg during training exercises. On the last day of May, a 21-year-old intelligence analyst from New York was killed during a training exercise involving a parachute.

A February training exercise with live-fire artillery claimed the life of a 22-year-old Washington native assigned to Bravo Battery, 3rd Battalion, 321st Field Artillery Regiment. Seven others were wounded in the incident with an M777 light-towed howitzer. Two of the injured were maimed and suffered life-altering injuries.

Pursuing claims against the government is difficult and used to be prohibited entirely under the sovereign immunity doctrine. However, as a memo from the United States House of Representatives details, under provisions of the Federal Tort Claims Act, with certain stipulations being met, "[i]ndividuals who are injured or whose property is damaged by the wrongful or negligent act of a federal employee acting in the scope of his or her official duties may file a claim with the government for reimbursement for that injury or damage."

Pursuing such claims is complex and involves many factors and conditions. To learn whether the FTCA would apply in a similar case, contact a legal professional for guidance.

Source:  The Fayetteville Observer, "Fort Bragg airman killed Thursday in training exercise has been identified" Nancy McCleary, Jul. 19, 2014

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