Infantry Drills

6-43: Occupation

Previous: 6-42: Security Measures

6-43. A patrol base is reconnoitered and occupied in the same manner as an ORP, with the exception the platoon will typically plan to enter at a 90-degree turn. The leader leaves a two-Soldier observation post at the turn; the patrol covers tracks from the turn to the patrol base.

6-44. The platoon moves into the patrol base. Squad-sized patrols generally will occupy a cigar shaped perimeter; platoon-sized patrols generally will occupy a triangle shaped perimeter.

6-45. The leader inspects and adjusts the entire perimeter, as necessary.

6-46. After the leader has checked each squad’s portion of the perimeter, each squad leader sends a two-Soldier R&S team to the leader at the patrol’s command post. The leader issues the three R&S teams a contingency plan, reconnaissance method, and detailed guidance on what to look for (enemy, water, built up areas or human habitat, roads, trails, or possible rally points).

6-47. Where each R&S team departs is based on the leader’s guidance. The R&S team moves a prescribed distance and direction, and reenters where the leader dictates:

  • R&S teams will prepare a sketch of the area to the squad front if possible.
  • The patrol remains at 100 percent alert during this recon.
  • If the leader feels the patrol was tracked or followed, he may elect to wait in silence at 100 percent alert before sending out R&S teams.
  • The R&S teams may use reconnaissance methods such as a box or fan discussed later in this chapter. Regardless of the method chosen; the R&S team must be able to provide the leader with the same information.
  • Upon completion of the information collection by the R&S teams, the platoon leaders makes a decision to either stay in the current patrol base and begin priorities of work or move the patrol base to an alternate location.

Next: 6-48: Priorities of Work

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