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Military drill to start as scheduled despite rehearsal injury

ROC Central News Agency

2018/05/17 16:22:31

Taipei, May 17 (CNA) The Han Kuang exercises, Taiwan's biggest annual military drill, will be held June 4-8 as scheduled, despite a paratrooper being critically injured Thursday during a rehearsal in Taichung for the drill, according to the military.

The injured soldier, Chin Liang-feng (秦良丰), from the Army Aviation and Special Forces Command was rushed to hospital, where he remained in critical condition, according to Deputy Minister of National Defense Shen Yi-ming (沈一鳴).

The accident occurred at the Ching Chuan Kang air base when Chin jumped from a C-130 transport plane flying at around 1,300 feet and his parachute failed to open, according to Shen.

Minister of National Defense Yen De-fa (嚴德發) has directed a team led by Chief of the General Staff Lee Hsi-ming (李喜明) to investigate the accident, Shen added.

While accompanying Chin's parents to visit him in hospital, Lee said the ministry will do its utmost to support and help the 26-year-old injured paratrooper, who had planned to leave the army next year, and wished him a speedy recovery.

According to an initial investigation, the accident occurred mainly because the paratrooper's parachute failed to open completely, Lee said, adding that further investigation will be required to confirm the cause.

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has received a report on the case and has directed the relevant agencies to give full assistance to the injured soldier, according to Lee.

After four hours of emergency medical treatment, Chin's condition had reportedly improved.

The severity of his coma after medical treatment was at level 7-8 on the 3 to 15-point Glasgow Coma Scale, with 3 being the worst condition and 15 being that of a normal person, according to a hospital spokesman.

(By Ku Chuan, Su Mu-chun and Evelyn Kao)

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