Corporal Ryan Lovatt Wiki
Corporal Ryan Lovatt Biography
Who was Corporal Ryan Lovatt ?
A Scottish soldier who got drunk before falling from a Polish hotel balcony may have died because alcohol restrictions at military bases are too strict, according to an investigation.
Corporal Ryan Lovatt, 25, died of his injuries in August 2019 while resting from his military duties in Warsaw.
He was serving with the Royal Mechanical and Electrical Engineers (REME), and had been sent to diplomatic services with the Royal Scottish Dragon Guard.
It had been sent to Eastern Europe as part of Operation Cabrit, a code name for the UK’s contribution to NATO’s enhanced forward presence.
Cpl Lovatt was one of around 150 British soldiers deployed to Poland, where they are part of the US-led battle group to show “transatlantic force” against Russia.
In a recess, the investigation heard that Cpl Lovatt was drinking heavily on the night of July 31, 2019 and the early hours of August 1, and a doorman pepper sprayed him as he left a club.
The investigation heard that there was a ‘rule of two can’ about alcohol during the deployment that was described as ‘quite restrictive’.
The camp facilities also “left much to be desired and morale was not high,” it was said at Oxford Coroner’s Court.
Senior Coroner David Salter said: ‘There were two incidents outside the clubs where some members of the group were pepper sprayed by gate staff but based on the evidence I heard this appears to have been unprovoked and clumsy.
“Corporal Lovatt was pepper sprayed during the second incident and he returned to the hotel in a taxi with a colleague who took him to his room.”
A fellow soldier put him to bed in his room at the City Comfort Hotel, Warsaw, but then he fell accidentally and without witness from the balcony of his room until his death.
There was no evidence that this was intentional or any suspicious circumstances.
The coroner issued a report to the Defense Ministry to prevent future deaths suggesting that the military policy on alcohol was too strict, leading to heavy drinking when soldiers were off duty.
Mr Salter said: “The deployment appears to be somewhere between an operational tour and normalization.
‘The result of this appears to be a systemic problem with regard to understanding the policy and its enforcement.
‘It is possible that a restrictive alcohol policy and poor base conditions could lead to binge drinking on a trip like this.
Instead of tightening the policy, it is possible that less restrictive conditions at the base are part of the answer.
Whatever opinion is taken of the above, be it a rule of two can, a rule of four or more, an important safeguard is the requirement that a soldier, normally a noncommissioned officer, be nominated as a shark guard and remain sober and vigilant. .
‘It is a well known and common sense concept.
“It is not clear to me if there is a formalized policy. I anticipate that the system may work differently depending on personnel and location.
In this case, the system did not work effectively as the person designated as shark watcher did not appear to know that he had been nominated.
Others who gave testimony were not clear about the existence or requirements of such a system.
“In summary, my concern is that there is no realistic, viable or widely understood policy that can be applied with respect to alcohol in Operation Cabrit and that, furthermore, the role of shark surveillance is not being given greater importance.”
A spokesman for the Defense Ministry said: ‘The health and well-being of our personnel is of the utmost importance, which is why commanders offer extensive guidance to help personnel make informed decisions.
“In addition to treatment for those struggling with severe alcohol abuse, all three Services are developing comprehensive programs as part of an overall healthy lifestyle strategy.”
Following the death of Cpl Lovatt, his family said in a statement: “We are devastated by the loss of our son Ryan.
“We never would have expected him to get hurt in a deployment like this.”
Corporal Ryan Lovatt Quick and Facts
- Ryan Lovatt, 25, died after falling from a hotel balcony in Warsaw, Poland in 2019
- The Scottish soldier got drunk before his injuries and death, an inquest heard
- The inquest heard he may have died because of overly strict alcohol restrictions