Previous: 5-9: Tactical Road Marches
5-11. The organization for a tactical road march is the march column. A march column consists of all elements using the same route for a single movement under control of a single commander. The four elements of a march column include, reconnaissance, quartering/advance party, main body, and trail party.
5-12. A brigade conducting a tactical road march is an example of a march column. The subordinate elements of a march column are a march serial and a march unit. A march serial is a major subdivision of a march column that is organized under one commander who plans, regulates, and controls the serial. An example is a battalion serial formed from a brigade-size march column. A march unit is a subdivision of a march serial. It moves and halts under the control of a single commander who uses voice and visual signals. An example of a march unit is a company from a battalion-size march serial.
5-13. A march column provides excellent speed, control, and flexibility, but sacrifices flank security. It provides the ability to deploy forces to the front of the column. A march column is utilized when speed is essential and enemy contact is unlikely. However, functional and multifunctional support elements, such as air defense and engineers, are spaced throughout the column to protect and support the movement. (Refer to FM 3-90-2 for more information.)