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Military

EQUIPMENT AND SUPPLY


OBSERVATION: Units could not obtain sufficient maps of the area of Southwest Asia.

DISCUSSION: Maps in the scales 1 :50K and 1 :250K for Southwest Asia were not immediately available in the quantity required and were not current. Some mapsheets were not available. Preparation and distribution of overlays takes time; therefore, units need maps prior to deployment.

LESSON(S): Units must order maps immediately upon notification of deployment.

Consider alternatives, such as satellite and air imagery, for unavailable or outdated maps.

OBSERVATION: Petroleum, oils, and lubricants (POL) products were not stored correctly for shipment.

DISCUSSION: Improperly stored POL products resulted in damage to the POL containers. Additionally, some POL were stored with ammunition. A POL leak could lead to a catastrophic occurrence.

LESSON(S): Established guidelines for the storage of hazardous materials must be known, followed and enforced to ensure the safety of soldiers and equipment.

OBSERVATIONS: As new weapons systems were fielded, units did not update their basic load ammunition requests.

DISCUSSION: The failure to update the requests created delays and confusion in the drawing of ammunition. The ammunition for the new weapons systems was on hand, but paperwork had to be revised during the upload.

LESSON(S): Units must update their basic load ammunition requests to reflect the ammunition for newly fielded systems.

OBSERVATION: Inadequate coordination between units and Ammunition Supply Points (ASPs) prevented a smooth ammunition upload.

DISCUSSION: Some units expected delivery of their basic loads. In past training exercises, ammunition had been delivered to them. The supporting ordnance units were not prepared to transport the ammunition to the units (although they were prepared to ship palletized loads to Southwest Asia). When transportation to the units was arranged, it was found that units had filled their organic ammunition transporters with other classes of supply. This created further storage, transportation and safety problems.

LESSON(S): Units and their supporting ASPs must plan and train ammunition upload procedures.

OBSERVATION: One division surgeon's office developed and issued a "health pack" of items to individual soldiers.

DISCUSSION: Most of the health items were Class VIII that can be ordered through the unit supply room. The pack included books on stress, suntan lotion, dental items, chapstick, foot powder, and sunglasses. Recommendations from field observations are to add sun block, insect repellant, and some form of antidiarrhea medicine. These packs are important from both a readiness and a morale perspective.

LESSON(S): Consider adding comfort items to Class VIII basic loads.

S4s and the Division Medical Supply Officers (DMSOs) must be ready to assist in resolvng any shortages.

OBSERVATIONS: Field sanitation teams were poorly trained and were short of essential supplies.

DISCUSSION: AR 40-5 requires units to have 10 to 20 percent of their unit trained as field sanitation teams. This was not done in many units, resulting in last-minute training programs. Units were also short of supplies, such as water purification tablets, calcium hydrochloride for water trailers, and 55-gallon drums for burn latrines. The number of 55-gallon drums must equal 8 percent of the number of assigned personnel IAW AR 40-5 and FM 21-10.

LESSON(S): Trained field sanitation teams and adequate supplies are essential.

OBSERVATION: Some units had problems determining when to divert the flow of supplies from home station to Southwest Asia.

DISCUSSION: The question of when to divert the flow of supplies is very difficult. Supplies will come into home station when they are needed in Southwest Asia and vice versa. The decision is driven by numerous factors, such as the deployment schedule, the unit strength and structure of support units, and the technical details inherent to automatic data processing.

LESSON(S): Units must develop a transition plan through close coordination with several individuals and agencies [i.e., the Assistant Division Commander (Support), the DISCOM Commander, the Division Transportation Office, and the Materiel Management Office] based on the commander's guidance.

OBSERVATION: Because of confusion over support relationships, many units ignored supply discipline, and flooded the supply system with requests.

DISCUSSION: Support relationships were not clearly established at the beginning of the deployment. Thus, many units felt they had to be self-sufficient and started requesting supplies off-line to the Army Materiel Command (AMC) commodity commands. These supplies were treated as an 01 priority and installations and Materiel Management Centers (MMCs) were flooded with supplies. This short-notice flood of supplies overwhelmed the MMC's capability tomaintain accountability.

LESSON(S): Immediately upon notification, establish a clear support relationship. MMCs must set up a control cell to handle off-line requests.

OBSERVATION: Units did not have sufficient quantities and sizes of NBC equipment.

DISCUSSION: Units did not have sufficient amounts of certain sizes of NBC masks and battle dress overgarments (BDOs). In part, this was due to commanders retaining excess in anticipation of personnel fills. Also, units did not have the banana oil they needed to properly test the serviceability of the masks; therefore, no unserviceable masks were turned in.

LESSON(S): The 5-percent allowance above authorized strength for certain sizes of NBC items may not match unit needs.

Units must continually monitor the sizes and serviceability of NBC equipment.

Use banana oil, and continually check serviceability.

Turn in unserviceable NBC equipment.

OBSERVATION: Some units deployed to Southwest Asia assuming they would return to home station within a few weeks.

DISCUSSION: Units should approach their departure from post from a long-term viewpoint. They should think about what to take as though they were not returning to the installation. The "shut-down" of facilities must be considered in the deployment plan. Procedures to gain access to facilities to check on water and heating systems, including areas with secured or stored equipment, must be developed. Facilities, including motor pools, must be cleaned up prior to departure. A plan for the disposition of general trash, wood, plastic, metal, serviceable and unserviceable Class IX, Class IV, paint (both serviceable and unusable from paint lockers), oil and sludge (from pits and separators), and Class III (serviceable and contaminated) must be developed.

LESSON(S): A detailed plan for facility turnover and management must be developed between the deploying tactical unit and installation.

OBSERVATION: Some units deployed with installation property.

DISCUSSION: Some units ignored established supply procedures and deployed with their installation property (e.g., ADP equipment). This adversely affected the installation mission of supporting follow-on forces.

LESSON(S): Units must coordinate with the installation for retention of the equipment.

OBSERVATION: During deployment, many units received equipment from nondeploying units without transferring accountability.

DISCUSSION: Property accountability was lost during equipment transfers. This resulted in wasted man-hours in an attempt to reestablish accountability through phone, fax, and letters.

LESSON(S): Transfer property accountability using established procedures.

OBSERVATION: The ability to perform maintenance at sea was limited.

DISCUSSION: Vehicles loaded on most ships were loaded tightly to make use of available space. This prevented mechanics from pulling maintenance en route.

LESSON(S): Units cannot depend upon pulling maintenance en route.

Maintenance crews with tools and repair parts must be available at both the arrival and departure ports to do immediate repairs.

Vehicle master switches must be turned off when the equipment is loaded on the vessel. Double-check!

OBSERVATION: Some maintenance units are not structured to support the equipment of customer units.

DISCUSSION: Early fielding of new equipment and selective callup of the RC units created customer support problems for maintenance units. Maintenance units did not have manuals, tools, repair parts, and, in some cases, the mechanics or training necessary to support new and different equipment.

LESSON(S): Reconcile new equipment and customer differences.

Request manuals, tools, repair parts, training, and personnel needed.

Request "push packages" of manuals, tools, parts, training, and personnel from units that normally provide support to the new customers.

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