Evac Drills - Vehicles

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by OldSnowy, Jun 24, 2010.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. OldSnowy

    OldSnowy LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    I was wondering - are emergency evacuation drills - particularly in darkness/water - practiced for all those vehicles now on HERRICK? Is this a standard part of PDT?

    I was thinking of this due to the tragic deaths yesterday, and as I was informed by someone who should know that the US Army does this routinely as part of PDT, but that we may not.

    If we do not do this (and I hope that I am misinformed, and that we do) there may be many good reasons why - but if it is due to lack of time, or lack of cash, or (possibly most likely) lack of vehicles available for training, then someone should start shouting.
  2. The US probably practice because they lost over 50 personnel drowned in two years,2003-05


    Now there might be reasons for that in US vehicle use doctrine, but I suspect that its largely due to tired soldiers driving in unfamiliar environments, and being weighted down with body armour.

    So far I suspect that we might have been lucky, but given the weight of gear carried nowadays, I suspect that drowning is going to become an increasing risk. PRobalby now is a good time to introduce some escape drills into PDT.
  3. Roll over i.e Drop Down drills are practiced and have to be signed off.

    How you practice getting out of an up turned vehicle in the dark and in water I have no idea? I'd be surprise if the yanks practice it to that extent, you'd be looking at something like the helicopter dunk tank.

    It also is a bit issue for the yanks as their vehicles have a very high centre of gravity.

    There are other issues best not discussed on an open forum.

    We also lost someone in this horrible way, RIP.
  4. I think Royal Marines practice escaping from helicopters in a 'dunker'. Completely different situation though in an armoured vehicle with effectively unbreakable windows. I'm not sure what type of training could be given that would be of use in such a terrible situation.

    The US Navy, and other navys install 'escape breathing apparatus' in their aircraft. These are small bottles of compressed air with a scuba type mouthpiece. About the size of a coke can, it gives passengers in a ditched aircraft a couple of minutes of air while they are escaping. Doesn't take up much room under a seat but the wisdom of carrying highly compressed gas in a military vehicle would have to be considered.

  5. Quite, wouldn't want compressed air adding to the spalling/burning ammo/fuel/hydraulic oil/crew etc would we? :p

  6. I've done this for a civvy job and it's really not much fun. I think the prospect of doing it from an upturned armoured vehicle would be negligible. Seatbelts that can be unfastened when under load (ie when you're hanging in them) are a must though. Perhaps a small rescue knife carried on the upper body is a worthwhile consideration?

    Then again, maybe just more emphasis on driving carefully? These are just the RTAs that we hear about, there must be lots of near misses.

    God rest their souls.
  7. Knowing someone who was invoved in a AFV rolling down a slope in Bos - it is most likely that all the loose debris inside the vehicle (ammo, daysacks, helmets, batteries, weapons, people etc) would of renderend the occupants unconscious or at least incapacitated, so an escape drill probably would not of helped much.

    A terrible thought.
  8. I've done the 'dunker' down at Yeovilton. You're dressed in clean fatigues / coveralls. The 'dunks' progress from upright / lighted right through to rolling over / unlit. The whole lot probably gave me the confidence to get out of a helicopter that had made a controlled landing / surviveable crash onto water whilst wearing clean fatigues. I'm under no illusions as to my ability to get out whilst wearing webbing / body armour etc. It'll be fecking hard if not impossible without ditching the kit. Remember it's made easier in a helicopter that has pop out windows and doors. Armoured vehicles are a whole different ball game. I'll wait for the BOI to judge about this case.

    As for the dunker itself, I'd thoroughly recommend it to all. Give them a ring and book it for all your troops!
  9. There was talk in the training world on this a couple of years ago. I'm not sure how advanced the discussion became.

    I seem to remember the general view is that it would be horrendously expensive and beyond impractical to construct full mock-ups of all vehicle models in such a scale that everyone could be put through the drills (aside from the practicalities of consciousness, internal kit, etc).

    I'm guessing that more lives could be saved by spending the money elsewhere.
  10. I lost a mate in Bosnia, 432 rolled into river and was stuck upside down.Crew and commander managed to swim to safety but apon head count they were one man down. My mate ( RIP) was the driver and as usual with 430 series the only one belted in, the commander tried to swim through the vehicle and save him but alas the seat belt held him fast and by the time he was released it was too late.
    As soon as I heard of this latest tragady I thought of the belts and wondered if they played a part, I have a feeling they did ( crews now belt in because of the IED threat).If this is the case should we be installing a small pouched escape knife, the hooky things, on each and every belts shoulder strap?
    Sad sad loss.
  11. From experience as far back as 2003 PDT Telic (different theatre but still issue's) evac drills for roadside incidents were 'not' in the trg programme for this kind of incident, although the vehicles used were different there was no specific drills carried out,

    In leconfield even the Instructor's programme did not cover this & was'nt even discussed at the right level's, I'm unaware of any updates or additions to date.
  12. A funny thought but thought I'd chuck it on, feel free to take the urine.

    I think, to be honest, said drills would be a bit pointless because:
    1) You have to get out of the seatbelt, which is designed to hold you in.
    That solved (knife? special design? etc)
    2) You have to get to an exit point - hatch / door
    (Osprey cannot be swum in, there's been a number of near misses just lads falling facedown in water)
    3) You have to get through said hatch
    (Which may not be so easy when the vehicle's at an odd angle and there's a few ton of water pushing on the door)

    Could a self-inflating buoyancy system be invented to prevent the submersion of the wagons in the first place?


    Maybe preventing submersion in the first place might be a better angle than trying to help it once it's happened.