IDF Soldier Critically Injured in Golan Heights Exercise

The soldier, serving in the Golani infantry brigade, was apparently run over by a tank; all army exercises in the Golan Heights were halted until conclusion of initial probe.

An Israel Defense Forces soldier was critically injured during an infantry and tank joint exercise Monday in the Golan Heights. The soldier was taken by helicopter to Rambam Medical Center in Haifa after receiving initial treatment.

All IDF exercises in the Golan Heights were halted after the incident.

Initial investigations found that the soldier, who belongs to Battalion 51 of the Golani Brigade, was sleeping on the ground, in the field, against regulations. The soldier was run over by the tank, apparently as the tank was driving in reverse.

The exercise conducted in the Golan Heights is part of a series of drills conducted in the IDF company and battalion commanders training course. This particular exercise included infantry forces from Golani and the Armored Corps 188th brigade.

The IDF has suffered in recent months a number of accidents in which soldiers and officers have been killed. In June, soldier Pvt. Dor Jan was killed in an operational mishap when his patrol vehicle overturned near the border with Syria in the Golan Heights. Jan’s battalion commander was removed after that accident, which had followed several other problems noted with his performance.

Three weeks later, two IDF naval officers, Capt. Omri Shahar and 1st Lt. Rafael Bublil were killed in a road accident on Route 4. Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz issued a reprimand to the officers’ commanders following the accident, and suspended the commander of the Dvora patrol boats division from serving in a command position for two years.