Monday, 8 March 2010


Yesterday morning a British soldier was killed as a result of small arms fire near Sangin, in Helmand Province.

He belonged to A Company 4 RIFLES, part of the 3 RIFLES Battle Group and was killed in a fire-fight with insurgents at Patrol Base Bariolai to the north of Sangin District Centre.

His death was the result of gun-shot wounds sustained during an insurgent attack on the Patrol Base involving small arms and rocket-propelled grenades. We have now lost 271 of our armed forces in this war.

British fatality rates in Afghanistan are much higher than those of US and Canadian forces and now there's growing evidence that helicopter shortages could be a major factor. Professor Sheila Bird (a top statistician) and Clive Fairweather (a former SAS colonel) discovered that between May 2009 and February this year the British death rate of 14.6 per 1000 personnel years was much worse than both the Canadians (10.8) and the Americans (5.7). 1000 personnel years is equivalent to 4000 troops in theatre for three months.

Professor Bird believes further explanation is needed, insisting 'chance is not the explanation.'

Canada, in 2009, increased air support to 5.6 helicopters per 1000 personnel. At the same time Britain had a meagre 3.3 per 1000. Since May 2009 Canada's military fatalities have seen 27 deaths rather than the expected 55, leaving British forces with the worst death rate.

A MoD spokeswoman said: " To present fatality rates in this way is a misunderstanding of the nature of operations."

I should think Professor Bird and Mr Fairweather used the same criteria for the US, Canada and the UK.


Oldrightie said...

These are deteriorating situations where the Taliban are gaining free movement to attack our bases and Kabul. The Russian experience gets ever more similar. As for Labour, see my latest post. How low can you get?

marry said...

Blogs are so informative where we get lots of information on any topic. Nice job keep it up!!

Labour Dissertation

strapworld said...


Another soldier blown up this morning!

I think we should start putting pressure on ALL political parties to bring them home.

As Oldrightie says we have to learn from the Russian experience.

Oldrightie said...

Now 272 killed and rising. Let us not forget the tragic injury toll per soldier killed, either.

subrosa said...

OR and of course Brown wants to gag the media. I'll read you shortly. Have been busy this morning.

subrosa said...

Yes OR, will do a post right now.

subrosa said...

Thanks strapworld, it just goes from bad to worse doesn't it. The Russians must be thinking we're nutters.

Anonymous said...

For statisticians, educators, students and researchers: I have put one of the most comprehensive link lists for hundreds of thousands of statistical sources and indicators (economics, demographics, health etc.) on my blog: Statistics Reference List. And what I find most fascinating is how data can be visualised nowadays with the graphical computing power of modern PCs, as in many of the dozens of examples in these Data Visualisation References. If you miss anything that I might be able to find for you or if you yourself want to share a resource, please leave a comment.

Related Posts with Thumbnails