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Risk Management Responsibilities

1. Commander.

a. Ensure ability of BOS functions to perform to standard to minimize human error, materiel failure and environmental effects.

b. Establish force protection policy and realistic safety goals, each with objectives and priorities.

c. Ensure commander's training assessment considers ability of BOS functions to protect the force. Select and ensure implementation of long-term, short-term and near-term control actions to improve force protection.

d. Ensure staff integrates risk management into the planning and execution of training and operational missions.

e. Make risk decision. Select, monitor and enforce implementation of controls for hazards most likely to result in loss of combat power. After implementing controls, if risk is still above authority to accept, elevate risk decision to the appropriate command level.

f. Determine if unit performance meets force protection guidance. Determine effectiveness of hazard controls and necessary changes to guidance and controls. Ensure these changes are fed back into the training management cycle and guidance for operational missions, including unit's SOP.

2. S3 (Safety). For the purposes of this paper, the officer designated by the commander as responsible for the force protection components of safety and fratricide avoidance is identified as the S3 (Safety). (NOTE: Analysis of S3 (Safety) tasks outlined in this report for Brigades and Battalions support placement in the S3 functional area. This placement is reflected in FM 101-5, Final Draft, August 1993).

a. Monitor ability of each BOS to protect the force. Advise commander when below-standard status (affecting force protection) of any BOS is detected.

b. Develop input for commander's force protection policy and goals with objectives and priorities.

c. Develop force protection input for quarterly training guidance and SOP.

d. Develop safety input options for commander's training assessment.

e. Complete risk assessment for each course of action (COA) during operational missions.

f. Assess unit risk management and force protection performance during training and operations. Provide recommended changes to force protection guidance and controls.

3. Staff (All).

a. Execute functions to provide:

(1) Support needed to meet operational requirements.

(2) Procedures and standards that are clear and practical for each METL task.

(3) Training necessary for METL performance to standard.

b. Identify force protection shortcomings in BOS functions and develop control actions.

c. Apply risk management procedures. Develop and implement controls selected by the commander.

4. Leaders.

a. Enforce METL task performance to standard. Adopt the "Crawl-Walk-Run" approach in planning and executing training.

b. Administer the Safety Quiz. Use results to establish and execute training to provide needed force protection knowledge and skills.

c. Complete Next Accident Assessment for each soldier rated. Use results to provide counseling and training needed to reduce each soldier's risk.

d. Execute risk reduction controls selected by commander by developing and implementing supporting leader-level controls. Apply risk management procedures in executing each METL task. After implementing controls, if risk is still above leader authority to accept, elevate risk decision to the appropriate command level.

5. Individuals.

a. Sustain self-disciplined duty performance and conduct.

b. Execute risk management controls selected by the commander and leader.

c. Complete the Next Accident Assessment for Individuals. Identify controlactions for risk factors revealed by the assessment. Execute those within personal capability. Request chain-of-command assistance with those above personal authority/capability.

d. Use risk management procedures in executing METL tasks.

Vignette - Fraticide in a Minefield

Topic: OPTEMPO vs Safety

Discussion: The safety challenge in the early stage of the deployment of getting service members to perform tasks to standard was offset by the premise "get it done and get it done fast." This left the service member with the perception that safety requirements could be disregarded. The potential existed for a major accident to happen in critical areas such as vehicle operations, weapons handling, materials handling operations, explosive safety, and fuel point operations.

Because the attitude of "get it done and get it done fast" was prevalent, nearly everything service members were taught in the areas of vehicle, weapon, fuel operations, and materials handling safety was disregarded. When service members were being interviewed while making on-the-spot corrections or while investigating an accident, their response was that while they knew the standards, they didn't apply outside the United States and particularly not during a "real-world" mission. Service members are either improperly trained, improperly informed, or simply draw their own conclusions as to when they must follow standards.

This observation was proven over time in that as the OPTEMPO decreased, safety compliance increased. Without clear direction and realistic time frames to accomplish missions, subordinates will perceive that the boss meant "right now--at all cost."

Lesson(s): Leaders at all levels must be sensitive to the perception and reaction of subordinates to directives. They must keep subordinates focused on performing tasks to standards regardless of the pace of the operation.

Risk Management Procedures--Operations

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One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger - by Matthew Yglesias