BERLIN (Reuters) – A British soldier crashed not one but two 8-tonne reconnaissance tanks after breaking out of his camp in north Germany early on Friday on a drunken joyride.
The 18-year-old soldier drove the first Scimitar tank out of his camp near Hohne at about 4 a.m. but left the road after half a kilometre and the vehicle ground to a halt, police in the nearby town of Celle said.
Undeterred, he walked back to base, fetched another light tank and sped off towards the town of Bergen, pursued by who had spotted him. When they tried to block his path he swerved and crashed into a beech tree.
“He evidently tried to shake them off, then lost control of the vehicle,” said a police spokesman. “I don’t know if he was an experienced tank driver but I’m not sure you can be at 18.”
German police said his alcohol level was double the legal limit and opened a dangerous driving investigation.
“Why and how he did it, we don’t know yet,” said an army spokesman, who added that the soldier was with a reconnaissance unit but gave no further details.
(Reporting by Dave Graham, editing by Tim Pearce)