Soldier killed after he was swept away by river

A British soldier has been killed in a rafting accident in Austria.

Austrian police said that the 22-year-old British man had come with a group of other members of the British Army from Germany to take part in the rafting at Landeck in Tirol.

Austria has seen torrential rain in recent days and experts are investigating whether it was safe to have taken part in the trip. It is unclear if the accident was part of an army organised exercise or if the man and his army colleagues had made the rafting trip as part of a private booking.

Police who’ve been piecing together what happened said it appeared that the boat with eight people on board had turned over shortly after it set off along the Inn River near Fliess.

Attempts to resuscitate the soldier did not work. He was named only by the police by his first name John and the first initial of his surname L. because of local privacy laws.

Eyewitnesses said that the man had lost his grip on the boat when he and his colleagues attempted to turn it back over. The water current was reportedly too strong and he was swept away downstream.

His lifeless body was recovered a short while later and attempts were made to resuscitate him without success.

The boat was the last of three that set off on the ill-fated trip and had apparently been hit by a huge wave shortly before it turned over.