Infantry Drills

F-156: Ammunition Planning

Previous: F-152: MK19 and M2/M2A1 in the Defense

F-156. Leaders must carefully plan the rates of fire to be employed by machine guns as they relate to the mission and amount of ammunition available. The weapons squad leader must understand fully the mission the amount of available ammunition and application of machine gun fire needed to support fully all vital events of the mission. Planning ensures the guns do not run out of ammunition.

F-157. A mounted platoon or squad might have access to enough machine gun ammunition to support the guns throughout its operation. A dismounted platoon or squad with limited resupply capabilities has to plan for only the basic load to be available. In either case, leaders must take into account vital events the guns must support during the mission. They must plan the rate of machine gun fire needed to support the vital events, and amount of ammunition needed for scheduled rates of fire.

F-158. The leader must make an estimate of the total amount of ammunition needed to support all the machine guns. He then must adjust the amount of ammunition used for each event to ensure enough ammunition is available for all phases of the operation. Examples of planning rates of fire and ammunition requirements for a platoon’s or weapons squad’s machine guns in the attack follow.

Next: F-159: Know Rates of Fire

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