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Appendix C

Redeployment Guidance for Unit SOPs


This appendix provides units a baseline of information for developing unit SOPs for redeployment. Units should modify procedures and content for currency and organizational structure. The unit is a generic organization up to ARFOR level.

All units must be prepared to redeploy at the end of each exercise or contingency operation by land, sea, or air to bring personnel and equipment home or to another theater.


Commanders are responsible for ensuring that their units are prepared to redeploy. Critical to this process is the early identification of redeployment requirements. Commanders must rapidly provide accurate information on their personnel and equipment to plan the redeployment. Once the personnel and equipment are ready, USTRANSCOM coordinates transportation and then transports them to the correct location.


Redeployment planning should begin with the planning for the original deployment.


Personnel normally redeploy by commercial air. Constant accountability and attention to decrementing units at company level and below remain a paramount concern throughout the redeployment process.


Equipment/vehicles redeploy by land, sea, or air. By land and sea, tracked vehicles and rolling stock are driven onboard; supplies and small equipment usually are loaded into containers and then transported by ship, rail, or truck. Wheeled vehicles or other major end items are only loaded in containers under special conditions and must be coordinated with the ASCC/ARFOR. In case of a shortage of roll-on/roll-off ships, units may load vehicles into containers or flatracks. See MTMC Transportation Engineering Agency (MTMCTEA) Reference 96-55-23 for guidance on loading vehicles in containers. For movement by air, equipment is palletized on 436L pallets and loaded. Units maintain trained pallet-building teams. These critical skills must be internally managed in each unit to maintain both proficiency and capability for rapid redeployment. The following annexes provide more detail:

Annex 1 - Personnel

Annex 2 - Container Operations

Annex 3 - Customs


Annex 1 to Appendix C



Commanders must rapidly identify projected availability dates for personnel redeployment to the UMO based on equipment and vehicle cleaning, turn-in, and other requirements so that the designated transportation office can build the requirements for airflow.

Until it is completely redeployed, the unit continually updates its personnel status with the ASCC/ARFOR assistant chief of staff (ACofS), G1, who coordinates with transportation personnel to ensure that seats are available for all personnel. Redeployment is planned to the company level and decrements from companies must be tracked throughout to ensure all contracted seats are filled.


Manifesting is the process to account for personnel redeploying to home station. Units identify soldiers requiring identification cards and tags to the servicing personnel service detachment (PSD) or nearest military personnel division.

Upon receipt of passenger seat allocations from the ACofS, G3, unit S1s/UMOs update the personnel information for manifesting (within TC-AIMS II as it becomes available). Units provide the manifest as required by the time schedule established by the servicing DACG or port MCT.

The unit assigns an individual as the flight/chalk commander and briefs personnel concerning the passenger manifesting time, customs requirements, and transportation of personnel and baggage.

Upon arrival at the APOE, redeploying personnel process through the manifest site and customs. The manifest should include:

  • Last name, first name, middle initial.

  • Social security number.

  • Weight of soldier.

  • Unit assigned (must be original unit to ensure that correct onward movement is programmed).

The flight/chalk commander certifies final manifest, weight count and passengers aboard aircraft.


Prior to redeployment, ASCC/ARFOR adjutants coordinate close out dates for area post office (APO) mail service. The ASCC/ARFOR and unit keep the public affairs officer (PAO) informed of dates and anticipated arrival times and locations for returning troops. The PAO coordinates media coverage and local community welcoming activities, and assists family support groups with current information.



Annex 2 to Appendix C

Container Operations

Units identify a point of contact (POC) responsible for coordinating MILVANs/containers and the turn-in of equipment for sea movement. They request MILVANs through the MCT to allow ample time for delivery, inspection, and pickup.

Units ensure that equipment is thoroughly cleaned and prepared for loading in containers prior to arranging for customs/agriculture inspections. This should be arranged at least 96 hours prior to the time containers are required to be loaded. Customs/agriculture inspectors must be present at the time the containers are loaded. Units must properly block and brace cargo to prevent shifting during transport. Units prepare a detailed packing list of all equipment loaded into the container.

Ammunition containers are the last equipment loaded on the ship. The responsible unit in conjunction with the port MCT delivers the ammunition when the MTMC port manager determines it is ready for upload. Ammunition containers must not sit at the port for an extended period of time.

The responsible unit identifies all ammunition containers to MTMC by identification (unit) number. These containers are moved directly to the port and loaded immediately. Hazardous materials placards (for example, Class A explosive placards) must be affixed on all four sides in the upper right-hand corner. If an ammunition container is to be shipped empty, units remove the hazardous materials placards. Units submit transportation requests to the appropriate MCT, which coordinates delivery of containers to the seaport. The port MCT coordinates with MTMC to determine who should sign for the ammunition container(s).

All containers are marked as required by MTMC guidance. Requests for transport of containers must be accompanied by specific instructions on the pick-up location of containers. A POC must be present when the containers are picked up. Commanders or their representatives document the departure of the containers on the TCMD, and the MCT (if available) or the MTMC representative at the port documents the arrival of the containers at the port. Units departing before their containers are shipped coordinate with the designated transportation office to have the container turned over to a central processing point or the MTMC port manager prior to departure. See FM 55-80, for information concerning waivers and container certification.


Annex 3 to Appendix C


This annex provides an overview of customs and agriculture requirements for entry of DoD-sponsored cargo, except personal property, into the US. This annex applies to all DoD activities whose mission involves any responsibility for processing and shipping DoD-sponsored cargo from initial preparation for shipment through certification of cargo for border clearance purposes. Unit responsibilities are discussed later in this annex.

DoD-sponsored cargo includes the following:

  • Military support cargo.

  • Cargo controlled by DoD in the interest of national security.

  • Military aid cargo shipped in US flag aircraft and vessels.

  • Military services exchange cargo.


US Federal regulations provide that all Government imports are subject to inspection/examination and entry requirements. To satisfy these requirements, all DoD-sponsored cargo must be free of contraband and agricultural pests, be declared to the customs officer at the first port of entry, and be available for any appropriate border clearance inspection. The declaration of this cargo is the responsibility of the operator of the air or sea terminal having jurisdiction over the port of entry.


All DoD-sponsored cargo is inspected or examined, as appropriate, within the overseas area, preferably at the point of origin, prior to shipment of the cargo to the US. Military customs inspector (MCI) personnel conduct this inspection/examination. It can only be waived in those instances where inspection/examination is impracticable or uneconomical. Requests for waivers are forwarded through command channels to HQDA. Specific inspection/examination procedures follow.

Prior to unit moves, all military equipment to enter the US is inspected or examined, as deemed appropriate by commanders or MCIs. Military equipment is inspected/examined at the time it is placed in boxes, crates, containers, sea vans, or similar receptacles for movement. It is then secured until departure from the overseas area. Vehicles and similar items to be shipped in as-is condition are inspected/examined and secured immediately prior to loading on the departing aircraft or vessel. Over-the-road vehicles require agricultural inspections regardless of where the vehicles were used overseas and regardless of the area from which the vehicles were shipped.

At the point of origin, MCIs inspect/examine closed loop and special repair activity repairable spare parts and similar items for which the destination in the US is predetermined. They inspect/examine items when the shipment is being assembled, crated, containerized, or otherwise prepared for shipment.

When items return to the US from depot or other stocks, and destination of such items is not determined until time of shipment, inspection/examination overseas is not required. However, officers in charge of facilities consolidating such items into crates, containers, or similar cargo transporters establish procedures to preclude the introduction of contraband.

Immediately upon completion of the inspection/examination, a DD Form 1253 (Military Customs Inspection (Label)) or DD Form 1253-1 (Military Customs Inspection (Tag)) is properly completed, authenticated by official stamp and signature, and securely affixed to the outside of each container. The MCI completes and attaches the label or tag.

DoD-sponsored cargo classified for security or other reasons may be impounded at the US port of entry upon request by a US Customs official that the cargo be inspected/examined. A qualified and properly cleared representative of the DOD component or other agency to which the cargo belongs determines the authenticity of the classification.

All DoD-sponsored cargo entering the US is subject to reinspection/reexamination by US Customs/agriculture officials at the first port of entry for validating procedures and standards of the MCI program. The degree of reinspection is the prerogative of the border clearance officials. All shipments considered suspect by either the MCI or by the US border clearance officials are reinspected/reexamined.


All units undergo customs inspections prior to redeploying from foreign countries to the United States. Inspectors clear equipment and personnel if they find no prohibited items. The government enforces stringent inspection standards to ensure that agricultural pests and diseases do not contaminate America's agricultural industry. Commanders are responsible for ensuring that their units are ready to be inspected at the right time.


A large number of prohibited items cannot be returned to the United States. The list below covers the most common items. With each redeployment, other items may be added to the prohibited list. Prohibited items include:

  • Fruits, vegetables, plants, cuttings, seeds, and processed plant products.

  • Unprocessed animal products.

  • Controlled substances and drug paraphernalia.

  • Articles originating in North Korea, Cuba, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Iraq.

  • Destructive devices and explosives, such as brass, shell casings, ammunition, and projectiles.

  • Switchblade, butterfly, and spring-loaded knives.

  • Obscene/pornographic articles, books, movies, publications, and videotapes.

  • Counterfeit coins, currency, securities, or stamps.

  • Sand, soil, or dirt.

  • Privately owned weapons, enemy weapons, or any part of a foreign made weapon system.

  • Items produced through forced labor.

  • Personal effects of living or dead enemy.

  • Unauthorized unit/command war trophies.


Unit representatives coordinate inspection times with US Customs officials not later than five days prior to departure date. Equipment inspection must be completed 24 hours prior to departure. Units ensure that all equipment meets United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) standards, and they lay it out prior to the inspection. Customs personnel inspect equipment during pallet loading or as it is loaded into MILVANs. After the inspection, the equipment is stored in a sterile area until movement under escort to the APOE/SPOE.

Units clean all vehicles to USDA standards (100 percent free of all soil, dirt, vegetation, and harmful pests). Wash rack operations are critical to cleaning and customs clearing. Units ensure that sufficient steam cleaners are available to expedite the cleaning and inspection. Units may have to remove engines of tracked vehicles as part of the cleaning and inspection process. Customs personnel normally inspect items on the wash racks so that units can correct problems as needed.

Units inspect all baggage before moving to the inspection point. This inspection checks for cleanliness and prohibited items. All non-mission essential equipment should be redeployed on pallets to minimize the time necessary for inspection on the day of redeployment. Inspectors normally check all baggage 24 hours before the departure time. US Customs inspectors check a minimum of 10 percent of all checked baggage. Once inspected, baggage is stored in a sterile area until transported and loaded at the APOE/SPOE. Approximately four to six hours prior to the scheduled departure, soldiers process through customs with their carry-on bags. Once cleared through customs, soldiers remain in the sterile area until they move to their departure point.

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