Infantry Drills

B-31: Avoiding Fratricide and Friendly Fire

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B-31. A primary means of minimizing fratricide and friendly fire risk is to establish a standing weapons control status of WEAPONS TIGHT, which requires positive enemy identification before engagement. +The SOP also must dictate ways of identifying friendly rifle squads and other dismounted elements; techniques include using arm bands, glint tape, or an infrared light source or detonating a smoke grenade of a designated color at the appropriate time. Minimizing the risk of fratricide in the platoon can be accomplished through Mission Command Systems (if equipped); however, this does not supplant the platoon leader’s responsibility to plan for fratricide and friendly fire avoidance.

B-32. Finally, the SOP must address the most critical requirement of fratricide and friendly fire prevention maintaining situational awareness. It must direct subordinate leaders to inform the platoon leader, adjacent elements, and subordinates whenever a friendly force is moving or preparing to move.

Next: Section IV – Direct Fire Control

Go Back To: U.S. Army FM 3-21.8: The Infantry Rifle Platoon and Squad