Coroner: Airman died at English railway station while drunk
By ADAM L. MATHIS | STARS AND STRIPES Published: January 15, 2014
A Ramstein airman found dead at a railway station in southeastern England in August was intoxicated when he fell against a live rail, according to a coroner’s inquest Wednesday.
Staff Sgt. Ryan D. Austin was attempting to cross the railway tracks at Maidstone East railway station on Aug. 6 when he fell and touched the live rail, according to the Mid Kent and Medway coroner’s office.
Austin was found to have a blood alcohol level of 0.2 percent, indicating “significant intoxication” at the time of death, the coroner’s office said.
The legal driving limit in Britain is 0.08 percent.
Austin was en route to a temporary-duty assignment at RAF Lakenheath, England, when he died, a Ramstein spokesman said.
Austin, of Corbin, Ky., was with the 1st Communications Maintenance Squadron of the 435th Air Ground Operations Wing.
British Transport Police say they run education campaigns because many people do not realize the rail is electrified.