Canadian soldier killed in training exercise at Alberta facility

A Canadian soldier has died and another suffered minor injuries after an accident at a training centre in Alberta.

Private Steven Allen, 20, of Victoria, was inside a “tactical structure” that collapsed on Monday at the 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre in Wainwright.

He was airlifted to the University of Alberta Hospital where he died from his injuries.

The incident happened at the 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre, where Canadian soldiers train to become Regular Force Infantry.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper extended his condolences to the Allen family in a statement released Thursday.

“On behalf of all Canadians, Laureen and I offer our deepest condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Private Steven Allen,” Harper said in a statement.

“This tragic incident reminds us of the trials that our brave men and women in uniform go through as they train to defend our freedoms and liberties.”

Opposition Leader Thomas Mulcair expressed his sympathies for the Allen family Thursday evening.

“My condolences to the family of Pte. Steven Allen who lost his life serving his country at CFB Wainwright in Alberta,” he tweeted.

Minister of National Defence Rob Nicholson also expressed his sadness over Private Allen’s death.

“The loss of any soldier is devastating to the military community,” he said in a statement. “An investigation will be conducted into the circumstances surrounding this incident to ensure that every precaution is taken to protect the safety and security of our soldiers.”

“We are deeply saddened by this incident,” Lt.-Col. Sean Trenholm of the 3rd Canadian Division Training Centre said in a separate statement from the Department of Defence. “Our immediate focus is to provide support to the family of Private Allen and ensure members of the unit are provided the assistance they need to deal with the loss of their comrade.”

Allen joined the military just over a year ago and completed his Basic Military Qualification in February, the Department of Defence said. He had not yet served overseas.

The Department of Defence is investigating the accident.

It’s the second fatal training incident at the base in the last year.

Lt.-Col. Dan Bobbitt
was killed last May when the light armoured vehicle he was in rolled over during a training exercise.

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