Combat Service Support

Simply stated, the role of CSS in any military unit is to sustain the force for continuous combat operations. In the company team, the commander has ultimate responsibility for CSS. The XO and the 1SG are the teamís primary CSS operators; they work closely with the task force staff to ensure they receive the required support for the teamís assigned operations.


Section 1 Responsibilities
General Guidelines
Individual Responsibilities
Section 2 Trains
Company Team Combat Trains
Task Force Combat Trains
Task Force Field Trains
Trains Security
Section 3 Supply Considerations
Classes of Supply
Combat Load, Basic Load, and Prescribed Load List
Section 4 Resupply Operations
Routine Resupply
Emergency Resupply
Prestock Operations
Class IV/V Supply Points and Mine Dumps
Section 5 Maintenance Operations
Company Team Role
Cross-Attachment Considerations
UMCP Operations
Section 6 Health Service Support
Health and Hygiene
Sick Call and Health Assessment
Soldiers Wounded in Action
Soldiers Killed in Action
Section 7 Personnel Services
Postal, Financial, and Legal Services
Unit Ministry Team
Public Affairs
EPW Processing and Evacuation
Section 8 Reorganization and Weapon Replacement
Replacement and Cross-Leveling of Personnel
Replacement and Salvaging of Equipment
Integration and Preparation for Combat
Weapon System Replacement Operations
Section 9 CSS Planning Considerations
Development of the CSS Plan
CSS Briefings and Rehearsals
Section 10 Aviation CSS Missions
Aerial Sustainment
Casualty Evacuation



In most tank and mechanized infantry battalion task forces, CSS assets are assigned to the HHC. The HHC commander then provides each maneuver company team with personnel, equipment and supplies, and other support functions, including POL and transportation requirements. These services are provided by the HHC medical platoon, maintenance platoon, and support platoon.

Within that support structure, the company team must plan, prepare, and execute its portion of the task force CSS plan. Concurrent with other operational planning, the team develops its CSS plan during the mission analysis and refines it in the war-gaming portion of the troop-leading process. CSS rehearsals are normally conducted at both task force and company team levels to ensure the team receives a smooth, continuous flow of materiel and services.

The company teamís basic CSS responsibilities are to report and/or request support requirements through the correct task force channels and to ensure that CSS operations are properly executed when support elements arrive in the team area. The XO and 1SG will normally be in charge of these functions, with guidance and oversight provided by the commander. They must submit accurate personnel and logistical reports, along with other necessary information and requests.


The following paragraphs focus on specific individual responsibilities within the company teamís CSS chain.

Executive officer

The XO is the company teamís primary CSS planner and coordinator, reporting directly to the commander. During preparations for the operation, he works closely with the 1SG to determine specific support requirements in support of the tactical plan. He then must ensure that proper arrangements are made for delivery of CSS goods and services. The XO also performs these CSS functions:

  • Determine the location of the teamís resupply point based on data developed during operational planning and the war-gaming process.
  • Compile periodic maintenance updates from the platoon leaders, PSGs, the 1SG, and the maintenance team chief and provide updates to the commander as required.
  • Along with the 1SG, ensure that the company team is executing CSS operations in accordance with the task force plan.

First sergeant

The 1SG is the company teamís primary CSS operator. He executes the teamís logistical plan, relying heavily on team and task force SOPs. He directly supervises and controls the combat trains. The 1SG also performs these CSS functions:

  • Conduct CSS rehearsals at the company team level and/or integrate CSS into the teamís maneuver rehearsals.
  • Receive, consolidate, and forward all administrative, personnel, and casualty reports to the task force combat trains.
  • Direct and supervise the medical team, moving it forward when the situation requires.
  • Establish and organize the company team resupply point.
  • Meet the LOGPAC at the LRP, guide it to the company team resupply point, supervise resupply operations there, and if necessary, guide the LOGPAC to its subsequent destination.
  • Provide a company team orientation for new personnel and, in consultation with the commander, assign replacements to the teamís subordinate elements.
  • Supervise evacuation of casualties, EPWs, and damaged equipment.
  • Maintain the company team battle roster.

Supply sergeant

The supply sergeant is the company teamís representative in the task force field trains. He assembles the LOGPAC and moves it forward to the LRP. The supply sergeant also performs these CSS functions:

  • Coordinate with the support platoon leader for resupply of Classes I, III, and V.
  • Maintain individual supply and clothing records, and requisition Class II resupply as needed.
  • Requisition Class IV and Class VII equipment and supplies.
  • Coordinate with the task force PLL section to turn in and/or pick up maintenance documents, routine Class IX supplies, and recoverable materials.
  • Pick up replacement personnel and, as necessary, deliver them to the 1SG.
  • Receive and evacuate KIAs to the mortuary affairs point in the brigade support area (BSA).
  • Transport, guard, and/or transfer EPWs as required.
  • Guide the LOGPAC, along with EPWs and damaged vehicles (if applicable), back to the BSA.
  • Coordinate with the task force S1 section to turn in or pick up mail and personnel action documents.
  • Collect bagged contaminated soil and transport it to collection points as part of LOGPAC procedures.
  • Maintain and provide supplies for team field sanitation activities.

team chief

The maintenance team chief and the mechanics he supervises are assigned to the task force HHC, but are attached to the company team. The maintenance team chief performs these CSS functions:

  • Supervise maintenance and recovery operations.
  • Compile DA Forms 2404 and/or 5988 from the PSGs.
  • Review the forms, ensure deficiencies and problems are verified by the mechanics, and complete the forms as necessary (for example, adding the parts numbers for required parts).
  • Submit the completed forms to the 1SG or XO.
  • Develop and implement a tracking system to monitor critical maintenance services, such as the following:
  • - Deferred maintenance.

    - AOAP.

    - Services due.

    - Work to be completed by the maintenance team.

    - Status and flow of DA Forms 2404/5988.

    - Status of replacement parts, including parts on order and valid parts requisition numbers.

  • Distribute and/or store replacement parts.
  • Direct and/or supervise recovery operations to the UMCP.
  • Ensure all recoverable parts are turned in.
  • As appropriate, supervise turn-in of used or excess POL products and of hazardous waste.
  • Advise the XO and 1SG on vehicle recovery, repair, and/or destruction.
  • Conduct rehearsals of spill prevention procedures.
  • Ensure that soil contaminated during maintenance activities is collected, bagged, and turned in to the supply sergeant.
  • Assist the 1SG as required and, in his absence, serve as NCOIC of the company team trains.

Platoon sergeants

Each PSG in the company team performs these CSS functions:

  • Ensure crews perform proper maintenance on all assigned equipment.
  • Compile all personnel and logistics reports for the platoon and submit them to the 1SG as directed or in accordance with SOP.
  • Collect each DA Form 2404/5988 within the platoon, check the forms for accuracy, and submit them to the maintenance team chief.
  • Obtain supplies and equipment (all classes) and mail from the supply sergeant and ensure proper distribution within the platoon.

Senior aidman

Like the maintenance team chief and his mechanics, the company teamís senior aidman and medics are assigned to the task force HHC but attached to the team. The senior aidmanís responsibilities include the following:

  • Supervise triage for injured, wounded, and ill friendly and enemy personnel.
  • Provide first aid for and stabilize injured, wounded, or ill personnel.
  • Under the direction of the 1SG, evacuate those who are seriously wounded.
  • Supervise the company teamís field sanitation team.
  • Conduct sick call as required.
  • Assist in training company team personnel in first-aid procedures.
  • Advise the team chain of command on the health status of personnel and other health concerns.
  • Requisition Class VIII supplies, including combat lifesaver bags and first-aid kits, for the medical team and other company team elements.
  • Recommend locations for casualty collection points.
  • Supervise the teamís combat lifesavers and field sanitation team.



The most forward CSS element is the company team combat trains, which provide vehicle recovery, medical aid, and maintenance services. The 1SG normally positions the trains and directly supervises CSS operations. The trains normally operate 500 to 1,000 meters (or one terrain feature) to the rear of the company team. (NOTE: METT-TC factors ultimately dictate the actual distance.) This gives the team virtually immediate access to essential CSS functions while allowing the trains to remain in a covered and concealed position behind the FLOT. The company team combat trains normally include the following vehicles, with corresponding crews:

  • The M88A1 recovery vehicle.
  • The maintenance M113.
  • The 1SGís M113.
  • The medicís M113.
  • The commanderís and 1SGís HMMWVs.


The task force combat trains are normally positioned close enough to the FLOT to be responsive to forward units, but beyond the range of enemy direct fires. The trains are generally located 4 to 8 kilometers behind the most forward company. The task force trains normally include the CTCP, emergency Class III and Class V elements from the support platoon, the UMCP, and the BAS. The CTCP, BAS, and UMCP are normally located in separate, but nearby, positions; however, they can be collocated to form a base cluster for defense. The CMTís tool truck is normally located in the UMCP.


The task force field trains are normally positioned in the BSA. In offensive operations, this usually places them 20 to 25 kilometers behind the task force combat trains; in the defense, the distance is 20 to 40 kilometers to the rear. The company team normally locates its supply section and corresponding vehicles, including the water trailer and the CMTís PLL truck, in the task force field trains.


Because security of CSS elements is critical to the success of the company team and task force missions, the company team and task force combat trains and the task force field trains must all develop plans for continuous security operations. Where feasible, they may plan and execute a perimeter defense. The trains, however, may lack the personnel and combat power to conduct a major security effort. In such situations, they must plan and implement passive security measures to provide protection from enemy forces.


Fast, reliable communications are critical to the CSS effort. Whether as directed by higher headquarters or as needed to support the company team mission, the 1SG must be able to instantly report the company teamís status, including combat losses, and to send resupply and support requests.

As in all tactical situations, the radio is the fastest and most frequently used means for transmitting CSS requests and reports. It is also the least secure means of communications and poses other problems for the company teamís CSS operators. The task force A/L net is used for most CSS traffic, but the team may not have enough working radio systems to monitor it. When this is the case, a higher NCS will be forced to enter the company team net when it must contact the team. Another type of problem can arise when company teams enter the A/L net. The transmission of one team may "walk over" another teamís report or request. Unit SOPs must specify procedures to be followed in this type of situation to ensure that the task force field and/or combat trains receive all transmissions on a timely basis.

As an alternative, the company team can send CSS reports and requests by messenger or wire. Messengers are slower, but more secure, than radio transmission. Wire communications are also very secure, but are strictly limited in range and/or coverage. In situations where use of the radio is not possible, a messenger can be sent with the resupply or evacuation vehicle. In addition, either messenger or wire is the best means for sending lengthy or complex reports and requests.


The supply sergeant is responsible for obtaining supplies and delivering them to the company team. He handles small items himself; the assets of the support platoon are employed to deliver bulky or high-expenditure items. Priorities for delivery are established by the commander, but the demands of combat will normally dictate that supplies and equipment in Classes I, III, V, and IX are the most critical to successful operations.


Class I

Class I includes rations, water, and ice as well as gratuitous issue of items related to health, morale, and welfare. Class I supplies are automatically requested from the brigade on the daily strength report. Rations are prepared in the field trains and delivered with the LOGPAC. MREs stored on combat vehicles are eaten only when Class I resupply, including mess operations, cannot be accomplished.

Class II

This supply class includes clothing, individual equipment, MOPP suits, tentage, tool sets, and administrative and housekeeping supplies and equipment. Expendable items such as soap, toilet tissue and insecticide are distributed during LOGPAC operations.

Class III

Class III comprises POL products. Unusual Class III requests are normally submitted to the combat trains. POL includes both bulk and package products. Examples of bulk products include JP8 (Army common fuel), diesel, and MOGAS.

Package products are requested and received like Class II and Class IV items; they include 5-gallon and 55-gallon containers; packaged products such as lubricants, grease, hydraulic fluid, and solvents in amounts of 55 gallons or less; and cylinders of liquid and compressed gasses.

Class IV

Construction materials, pickets, sandbags, and concertina wire are among the items covered by Class IV. Company team SOP will specify the combat load of Class IV items for each vehicle.

Class V

Class V covers all types of ammunition and mines, including C-4 and other explosives.

Class VI

Class VI includes personal-demand items ordinarily sold through the exchange system. Examples are candy, tobacco products, soaps, cameras, and film. When a PX is not available, Class VI support is requested through the S1.

Class VII

This supply class includes major end items such as tanks, BFVs, and other vehicles. Class VII items are issued based on battle loss reports. Ready-to-fight weapon systems are sent forward with the LOGPAC.

Class VIII

Class VIII covers medical supplies. Combat lifesaver bags and first-aid kits are replaced on a one-for-one basis at the BAS.

Class IX

Class IX includes repair parts and documents required for equipment maintenance operations. Repair parts are issued in response to a specific request or are obtained by direct exchange of repairable parts, to include batteries for night vision devices and man-portable radios. In combat situations, exchange and cannibalization are the normal means of obtaining Class IX items.

Class X

In this class are materials to support nonmilitary programs such as agriculture and economic development. Instructions for request and issue of Class X supplies are provided at division level or higher.


The company team requests maps through the task force S4.


Combat load

The company teamís combat load includes the supplies that it physically carries into the fight. Some minimum requirements will be dictated by the task force commander; however, most items will be specified by the company team commander or by unit SOP. Specific combat loads will vary by mission.

Basic load

The basic load includes supplies kept by the company team for use in combat. The quantity of most supply items in the basic load is related to the number of days in combat the team may be required to sustain itself without resupply. For Class V, the basic load is a quantity of ammunition, specified by the higher command or by SOP, that the team is required to have on hand to meet combat needs until resupply can be accomplished.

Prescribed load list

The PLL specifies the quantity of combat-essential supplies and repair parts that major commanders direct their units to have on hand. In the company team, PLL items are normally carried on the PLL truck located in the task force field trains.


There are few, if any, scenarios in which US military forces will have all the supplies they need for an operation. Because of this, it is essential that every unitís daily logistical reports accurately reflect not only its operational needs but also what supplies and equipment are on hand.

As much as possible, CSS planners try to standardize "push" packages, providing all units with sufficient quantities of each supply item. Together with the commanderís guidance for issuance of scarce, but heavily requested, supply items, accurate reporting allows planners to quickly forecast supply constraints and then to submit requisitions to alleviate projected shortages. Conversely, inaccurate or incomplete reporting can severely handicap efforts to balance unit requirements and available supplies. As a result, some units may go into combat without enough supplies to accomplish the mission while others have an excess of certain items.


Resupply operations are generally classified as routine, emergency, or prestock. Cues and procedures for each method are specified in the company team SOP and are rehearsed during team training exercises. The actual method selected for resupply in the field will depend on METT-TC factors.


Routine resupply operations cover items in Classes I, III, V, and IX as well as mail and any other items requested by the company team. Whenever possible, routine resupply should be conducted daily, ideally during periods of limited visibility. Because tanks and other major combat vehicles consume large amounts of fuel (for example, M1-series tanks require refueling twice daily during offensive operations), the company team must resupply Class III at every opportunity.

LOGPAC operations

The LOGPAC technique is a simple, efficient way to accomplish routine resupply operations. The key feature is a centrally organized resupply convoy originating at the task force trains. It carries all items needed to sustain the company team for a specific period, usually 24 hours or until the next scheduled LOGPAC. Company team and task force SOPs will specify the exact composition and march order of the LOGPAC.


The company team supply sergeant first compiles and coordinates all of the teamís supply requests. Based on the requests, he them assembles the LOGPAC under the supervision of the support platoon leader or the HHC commander. He obtains the following items and materials:

  • Class I, Class III (bulk and packaged products), and Class V supplies from the support platoon. This will normally entail employment of one or two fuel HEMTTs and one or two cargo HEMTTs.
  • Class II, Class IV (basic load resupply only), Class VI, and
    Class VII supplies from task force S4 personnel in the field trains.
  • Routine Class IX supplies and maintenance documents (as required) from the PLL section in the field trains.
  • Replacement personnel and soldiers returning from medical treatment.
  • Vehicles returning to the company team area from maintenance.
  • Mail and personnel action documents (including awards and finance and legal documents) from the task force S1 section.

When LOGPAC preparations are completed, the supply sergeant initiates tactical movement to the LRP under the supervision of the support platoon leader. The supply sergeant and LOGPAC link up with the 1SG at the LRP.

Actions at the LRP

When the 1SG arrives at the LRP to pick up the company team LOGPAC, he updates all personnel and logistical reports and is briefed by the field trains OIC on any changes to the tactical or support situation. He then escorts the convoy to the company team resupply point, providing security during movement from the LRP.


The company team uses either the service station or the tailgate resupply method, both of which are discussed later in this section. The time required for resupply is an important planning factor. It must be conducted as quickly and efficiently as possible, both to ensure operational effectiveness and to allow the company team LOGPAC to return to the LRP on time. Service station resupply of the team can normally be completed in 60 to 90 minutes, although it may take longer. Tailgate resupply usually requires significantly more time than do service station operations.

Return to the LRP

Once resupply operations are completed, the LOGPAC vehicles are prepared for the return trip. Company team vehicles requiring recovery for maintenance or salvage are lined up and prepared for towing. KIAs are carried on cargo trucks, fuel trucks, or disabled vehicles. EPWs ride in the cargo trucks and are guarded by walking wounded or other company team personnel. All supply requests and personnel action documents are consolidated for forwarding to the field trains, where the appropriate staff section will process them for the next LOGPAC.

The 1SG or the supply sergeant leads the LOGPAC back the LRP, where he links up with the support platoon leader. Whenever possible, the reunited task force LOGPAC convoy returns to the field trains together. When METT-TC dictates or when the LOGPAC arrives too late to rejoin the larger convoy, the company team vehicles must return to the field trains on their own. Because only minimal security assets will be available, this situation should be avoided.

Resupply methods

As directed by the commander or XO, the 1SG establishes the company team resupply point using either the service station or tailgate method. He briefs each LOGPAC driver on which method will be used. When the resupply point is ready, the 1SG informs the commander, who in turn directs each platoon or element to conduct resupply based on the tactical situation.

Service station

With the service station method, vehicles move individually or in small groups to a centrally located resupply point. Depending on the tactical situation, one vehicle or section or even an entire platoon moves out of its position, conducts resupply operations, and then moves back into position. This process continues until the entire company team has been resupplied. Refer to Figure 7-1.

In using this method, vehicles enter the resupply point following a one-way traffic flow; only vehicles requiring immediate maintenance stop at the maintenance holding area. Vehicles move through each supply location, with crews rotating individually to eat, pick up mail and sundries, and refill or exchange water cans. When all platoon vehicles and crews have completed resupply, they move to a holding area, where, time permitting, the platoon leader and PSG conduct a PCI.

Figure 7-1. Service station resupply method.

Tailgate resupply

The tailgate method is normally used only in assembly areas. Combat vehicles remain in their vehicle positions or back out a short distance to allow trucks carrying Class III and Class V supplies to reach them. Individual crewmen rotate through the feeding area, pick up mail and sundries, and fill or exchange water cans. Any EPWs are centralized and guarded. KIAs, with their personal effects, are brought to the holding area, where the 1SG takes charge of them. Refer to Figure 7-2.

Figure 7-2. Tailgate resupply method.


Occasionally (normally during combat operations), the company team may have such an urgent need for resupply that it cannot wait for a routine LOGPAC. Emergency resupply may involve Classes III, V, and VIII, as well as NBC equipment and, on a rare occasions, Class I. The task force will usually use support platoon and medical assets located in the task force combat trains to conduct emergency resupply of the company team.

Emergency resupply can be conducted using either the service station or tailgate method, although procedures may have to be adjusted when the company team is in contact with the enemy. In the service station method, individual vehicles pull back during a lull in combat on order of the commander or platoon leader; they conduct resupply and then return to the fight. With tailgate resupply, the company team brings limited supplies forward to the closest concealed position behind each vehicle or element.


Prestock resupply, also known as pre-positioning, is most often required in defensive operations. Normally only Class V items are pre-positioned. Class III supplies can be pre-positioned; however, this requires company team vehicles to refuel before moving into fighting positions during initial occupation of the BP or to move out of their fighting positions to conduct refueling operations at the rear of the BP. Figures 7-3 and 7-4 illustrate two methods of pre-positioning supplies.

Prestock operations must be carefully planned and executed at every level. All leaders, down to vehicle commander and squad leader, must know the exact locations of prestock sites, which they verify during reconnaissance or rehearsals. The company team must take steps to ensure survivability of the prestock supplies. These measures include digging in prestock positions and selecting covered and concealed positions. The team commander must also have a plan to remove or destroy pre-positioned supplies to prevent the enemy from capturing them.

During offensive operations, mobile pre-positioning can be employed by loading supplies on trucks and positioning them forward on the battlefield. This technique works well if the company team expects to use a large volume of fire, with corresponding ammunition requirements, during a fast-moving operation.

Figure 7-3. Prestock resupply operations - method 1 (central Class V prestock site).

Figure 7-4. Prestock resupply operations - method 2 (Class V prestock site for each vehicle).


These sites are important elements of task force resupply operations. For a more detailed discussion of Class IV/V supply points and mine dump operations, refer to FM 90-7.

Class IV/V
supply points

Class IV/V supply points stock construction and barrier materials; they are also the sites at which the task force receives and transfers control of mines pushed forward by corps and/or division throughput haul assets. The task force has responsibility for establishing the supply point and for transporting materials from the point to locations in the task force area where the supplies are needed. The site is normally run by the task force S4 or his NCOIC, assisted by an NCO from the task forceís attached engineer company. Other task force elements, including the company team, may be tasked to provide personnel for supply point operations. These soldiers play a crucial role in organizing the site, unpacking the barrier materials, loading them onto transport vehicles, and as necessary, helping to transport the materials forward. (NOTE: The task force may supplement the supply point with mine dump sites to better support engineer platoons in establishing obstacles on the ground. Refer to the following discussion.)

Mines dumps

The mine dump is the most forward mine resupply node, although it is not normally a permanent supply point. It is the site at which mines are task organized into mine strip packages and then are inspected, prepared, and loaded into emplacing vehicles. Mine dump operations are primarily handled by an engineer company or platoon. When a mine dump supports an obstacle the company team has responsibility for siting, however, the team will normally augment the unit operating the dump. Table 7-1 illustrates how many mines a given number of soldiers can process in a given time period; this is a critical planning factor in mine dump operations.

Table 7-1. Processing schedule for mine dump operations.

Processing element

Quantity of mines processed

2-man team

25 mines/hour

Squad (8 soldiers)

100 mines/hour


300 mines/hour
3,600 mines/day


10,800 mines/day

NOTE: Processing rates are based on a speed of 2 minutes per mine processed by a 2-man team, with soldiers working 50 minutes per hour and 12 hours per day.


Proper maintenance is the key to keeping vehicles, equipment, and other materials in serviceable condition. It is a continuous process that starts with preventive measures taken by each vehicle crew and continues through repair and recovery efforts by higher-level maintenance personnel. It includes the services involved in inspecting, testing, servicing, repairing, requisitioning, recovering, and evacuating.

As a general guideline, repair and recovery are performed as far forward as the situation allows. When vehicles and equipment cannot be repaired on site, they must be evacuated to the rear for necessary repairs. Table 7-2 shows normal time guidelines for maintenance at each level of support. (NOTE: These guidelines indicate normal repair times only; they do not account for recovery time or for time spent awaiting repair parts.)

Table 7-2. Vehicle repair and maintenance time guidelines.



On site

Less than 2 hours


2 to 6 hours

FSB/field trains

6 to 24 hours


24 to 36 hours


"Flow" of
maintenance forms
and repair parts

Company team maintenance functions begin with PMCS, a daily crew responsibility, and crew-level preparation of the prescribed maintenance forms (DA Forms 2404 and/or 5988, as applicable). These forms are the primary means through which the crew obtains repair parts; they follow a pathway, described in the following paragraphs, from crew level to the task force field trains and back; the company team XO and the maintenance team chief supervise the "flow" of these critical maintenance documents and of repair parts.

Vehicle commanders collect their crewsí maintenance forms each day; they give the forms to the PSG, who consolidates them for the platoon. The PSG in turn gives the forms to the maintenance team chief, who reviews and verifies problems and deficiencies and requisitions Class IX items needed for maintenance and repairs. During the next LOGPAC operation, the completed forms are given to the 1SG or supply sergeant, who transfers them to maintenance personnel in the task force field trains.

In the field trains, PLL clerks issue the required repair parts they have on hand; they order any other required parts and assign a document number and status for the ordered parts. The maintenance forms, amended with the document numbers and status of ordered parts, are returned to the company team supply section (along with the issued repair parts). The amended forms and repair parts are transported via the LOGPAC to the company team area. The maintenance team chief works with PSGs and vehicle commanders to distribute the repair parts and to verify the accuracy and status of the parts on order.

Maintenance sequence

The vehicle crew conducts initial maintenance, repair, and recovery actions on site. Once it is determined that the crew cannot repair or recover the vehicle or equipment, the platoon contacts the 1SG, who in turn dispatches the CMT to the vehicleís location. If the CMT needs additional assistance, the team chief or the 1SG requests it from the BMO.

Location of the CMT

During offensive operations, the CMT usually follows one terrain feature behind the company team. In the defense, it is normally located one terrain feature or 1 to 2 kilometers behind the company team. This positioning enhances security and allows for quick reaction when support is requested by the platoons. In some situations, METT-TC factors may dictate that the CMT be positioned at the UMCP to further enhance security and survivability.


The number of mechanics in the company team combat trains, as well as their specialties, should reflect the number and types of vehicles in the team. As an example, a tank team should have at least one BFV hull mechanic, with appropriate manuals, in its trains; the team will also detach a tank hull mechanic to the corresponding mechanized infantry team.


When a vehicle or piece of equipment cannot be fixed quickly on site, it is moved to the task force UMCP, where it is repaired by the maintenance platoon or MST. When not involved in on-site actions, the CMT may assist with operations in the UMCP. Vehicles that cannot be repaired within the established timelines or that would overload the UMCPís capability are recovered to the field trains or FSB.


When a vehicle or piece of equipment cannot be recovered or is damaged beyond repair, the crew reports the situation to the commander. He will give permission for destruction of the materiel if that is the only way to prevent enemy capture. Crewmen remove all radios, crew-served weapons, ammunition, personal items, and other serviceable items and parts; they also take all classified materials or paperwork that could be of intelligence value to the enemy. The crew then destroys the vehicle or equipment using procedures specified in the team SOP.


Effective, timely medical care is an essential factor in sustaining the company teamís combat power during continuous operations. The commander must ensure that the teamís leaders and its medical personnel know how to keep soldiers healthy, how to save their lives if they are wounded or injured, and how to make them well once injury or illness occurs.


The commander and all leaders, in conjunction with the company team senior aidman and field sanitation team, must emphasize and enforce high standards of health and hygiene at all times. This "preventive maintenance" approach should cover all aspects of the soldierís health and well-being, including the following:

  • Daily shaving to ensure proper fit of the protective mask.
  • Regular bathing and changing of clothes.
  • Prevention of weather-related problems. These include cold-weather injuries such as frostbite, trench foot, and immersion foot and heat-related injuries like heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Soldiers must understand the effects of such conditions as sunburn and windchill.
  • Effective field sanitation measures, including unit waste control, waste disposal activities and facilities, water purification, rodent control, food service sanitation, and use of insect repellents.
  • Battle fatigue prevention, including strict implementation of the unit sleep plan.


In noncombat situations, the company team senior aidman will conduct sick call as needed. This will be coordinated through the 1SG and conducted either at the teamís position or during LOGPAC operations. In addition, the senior aidman will check with vehicle crews as often as possible to assess their medical needs and to gauge the overall health of the company team. He briefs the commander regularly on sick call activities and on the results of his health assessment.


Medical treatment of wounded or injured soldiers during combat operations is a continuous, progressive operation that occurs in a series of separate, but interlocking, stages. It involves personnel, equipment, and facilities at virtually every level of the organization.

Company team

The normal "flow" of medical treatment for combat casualties is from the combat lifesaver to the company team senior aidman at the casualty collection point to medics at the BAS. In addition, company team leaders play an important role in obtaining and providing medical services for their WIAs. The following paragraphs discuss the individual responsibilities of company team personnel in this process.

Combat lifesaver

Along with the vehicle commander, the combat lifesaver is almost always the first person on the scene to begin the process of treating wounded and injured personnel. With the help of the vehicle commander and company team and platoon aidmen, the combat lifesaver provides initial first aid to WIAs. He prepares them for medical evacuation or returns them to duty status after rendering first aid. Whenever possible, the company team commander should ensure that there is at least one combat lifesaver on each team vehicle at all times.

Vehicle commander

The vehicle commander is responsible for ensuring that wounded or injured crewmen receive immediate first aid and that the commander is informed of casualties. He coordinates with the 1SG and company team senior aidman for ground evacuation or with the 1SG or commander for aerial evacuation. The vehicle commander ensures that casualty feeder and witness statement forms are completed and routed to the proper channels. (NOTE: The casualty feeder card stays with the wounded soldier; witness statements are given to the 1SG.)

Senior aidman

The senior aidman is both the company teamís primary medical treatment practitioner and the supervisor of all battlefield medical operations. The latter role encompasses numerous responsibilities. The senior aidman works closely with the commander to ensure all members of team understand what to do to provide and/or obtain medical treatment in combat situations. He oversees the training of combat lifesavers and, once combat begins, directs their actions. He assists the vehicle commanders and the 1SG in arranging WIA evacuation.

The senior aidman is also responsible for monitoring the vital paperwork that is part of the medical treatment and evacuation process. He must ensure that DA Form 1156 (the casualty feeder report) remains with each WIA until the soldier reaches a source of definitive medical care (a surgeon or physicianís assistant) in the task force main aid station or field aid station. (NOTE: The Form 1156 is collected at the aid station by designated medical personnel or members of the task force S1 section; it is sent to the S1 section for further processing through administrative channels in the task force field trains.) If a soldierís remains cannot be recovered, the senior aidman ensures that the crew completes DA Form 1155 (witness statement) as quickly as possible and ensures that the form is given to the 1SG for processing.

First sergeant

The 1SG supervises and coordinates casualty operations, collects witness statements and submits them to the S1, and submits the battle loss report to the task force TOC. Perhaps his most important duty is managing the company teamís personnel status during combat operations; as necessary, he directs cross-leveling among platoons and vehicle crews to alleviate personnel shortages. The 1SG also supervises the completion and processing of DA Forms 1155 and 1156; refer to the discussion of these forms in the paragraph covering the senior aidmanís duties.


The commander has overall responsibility for medical services; his primary task is to prepare the team to properly treat and/or evacuate casualties. In this role, he works closely with others in the team medical process to ensure that they fully understand the responsibilities described in the previous paragraphs and are proficient in required medical skills. The commander designates the location for the company teamís casualty collection point and ensures that all vehicle commanders record the location on appropriate overlays. He also develops and implements appropriate SOPs for casualty evacuation; an example is standardized vehicle markings based on the severity of casualties carried on particular vehicles.


When combat begins and casualties occur, the first step is initial treatment of the WIAs. As noted, treatment is provided by combat lifesavers, platoon medics, the company team senior aidman, or any other crewmen qualified in first aid. Vehicle commanders arrange for evacuation of WIAs to the casualty collection point, which is normally set up in a covered and concealed location to the rear of the platoon position.

NOTE: Before casualties are evacuated to the collection point or beyond, leaders should remove all key operational items and equipment, including SOIs, maps, position location devices, and laser pointers. Every unit should establish an SOP for handling the weapons and ammunition of its WIAs.

At the collection point, the senior aidman conducts triage of all casualties, takes the necessary steps to stabilize their condition, and initiates the process of moving them to the rear for further treatment. He assists the PSG and vehicle commanders in arranging either ground transport or aerial evacuation (MEDEVAC or CASEVAC). (NOTE: Refer to the discussion of aerial evacuation in Section 10 of this chapter.)

When aerial evacuation is not absolutely necessary or when these assets are not available, the team has these options for transporting casualties:

  • The senior aidman can transport them to the BAS himself. He turns the WIAs over to the task force medical team, obtains any needed medical supplies, and returns to the company team location. (NOTE: The 1SGís M113 can be equipped with litters for use in medical evacuation.)
  • Casualties can be transported by the task force medical platoonís ambulance section. Although ambulances are task force assets, they can be task organized as needed. In many cases, they are habitually associated with the company team. The teamís assigned ambulance moves WIAs to the AXP, then returns to the team location.

In either option, task force medical elements assume responsibility for moving WIAs to the BSA for further treatment and evaluation. There, the FSB medical company will hold them for up to 72 hours. The wounded soldiers will then be returned to duty or sent farther to the rear for additional care.


The company team commander will designate a location for the collection of KIAs. All personal effects remain with the body, while equipment and issue items become the responsibility of the vehicle commander until they can be turned over to the 1SG or supply sergeant. As a rule, KIA remains should not be transported on the same vehicle as wounded soldiers. The commander will send a letter of condolence to the soldierís next of kin, normally within 48 hours of the death.


Personnel services include clothing exchange and showers, awards and decorations, leaves and passes, command information, mail, religious services, financial services, legal assistance, rest and relaxation, and any other service designed to enhance or maintain the soldierís health, welfare, and morale. The following paragraphs discuss several of these functions.


Postal services

Incoming mail is sorted at the task force trains and is then given to the 1SG or a certified mail handler from the company team for the next LOGPAC. All outgoing and returned mail is given to the 1SG or mail handler during resupply and is turned over to the S1 section when the LOGPAC returns to the field trains.

Financial services

Pay inquiries and allotment changes are collected by the 1SG or supply sergeant during resupply and are then submitted with other S1 actions when the LOGPAC returns to the field trains. When requested actions are completed, the S1 annotates actions taken and gives a copy of the document to the 1SG or supply sergeant, who returns it to the soldierís PSG (or the soldier) at the next LOGPAC.

Legal services

Requests for legal action should be submitted in writing to the S1 during the LOGPAC. As necessary, the S1 will either prepare all required documents and return them to the soldier or inform the company team commander of the time and location at which legal proceedings, such as a hearing, will be conducted.


The UMT, composed of the chaplain and his assistant, provides religious services and counseling for the company teamís soldiers; this includes soldiers who are in confinement or under arrest, as well as EPWs, detainees, and refugees. The chaplain conducts funeral or memorial services as necessary. The UMT also plays an important part in the primary care of casualties suffering from battlefield stress. The chaplainís assistant accompanies the chaplain during all activities, providing armed security and maintaining the UMT vehicle. He assists the chaplain in ministering to injured or wounded personnel and in preparing religious services.


The PAO is the commanderís official spokesman and handles the functions of public and command information and community relations. He provides the commander with public affairs advice and services covering all matters of solider and media interest. All requests from the media for interviews with any company team member should be directed to the task force PAO or S1.


EPWs and captured enemy equipment and materials are excellent sources of combat information and intelligence. This information, however, will be of tactical value only if prisoners and materials are processed and evacuated to the rear quickly. In any tactical situation, the company team will have specific procedures and guidelines for handling prisoners and captured materials; these measures are prescribed in team and task force SOPs and in the commanderís OPORD. Basic principles for handling EPWs are covered by the "five-S" procedures: search, segregate, silence, speed, and safeguard. Handling procedures also include tagging of prisoners and all captured equipment and materials.

In addition to initial processing, the capturing element is responsible for providing guards and transportation to move prisoners to the designated EPW collection points. Prisoners normally will be carried on vehicles already heading toward the rear, such as tactical vehicles being moved for repair or replacement or supply vehicles returning from LOGPAC operations. The capturing element also has responsibility for feeding the EPWs, providing them with medical treatment, and safeguarding them until they reach the collection point.

At the collection point, the 1SG generally assumes responsibility for providing security for the EPWs and for transporting them to the task force trains. He must be prepared to use any available personnel as guards, including the walking wounded or soldiers moving to the rear for reassignment.



Replacements for wounded, killed, or missing personnel are requested through the S1. Returning or replacement personnel arriving with the LOGPAC should already have been issued all TA-50 equipment, MOPP gear, and other items, including their personal weapons.

Within the company team, each platoon leader will cross-level personnel among his crews, with the 1SG controlling cross-leveling from platoon to platoon. Soldiers from disabled or destroyed vehicles will be used to fill out crews until replacement personnel and vehicles arrive at the company team CP.


Lost, damaged, or destroyed equipment will be replaced through normal supply channels and brought forward with the LOGPAC. When vehicles are evacuated to the rear for extended periods, crews will remove any serviceable equipment or parts for use on other company team vehicles.


To maintain effective, consistent combat power, the company team must have specific plans and procedures that allow each element to quickly integrate replacement personnel and equipment. Unit SOP should define how soldiers and equipment are prepared for combat; it covers such areas as uploading, load plans, PCCs and PCIs, and in-briefings.


WSROs are conducted to provide units with fully operational, ready-to-fight replacement weapon systems; they cover both vehicle and crew-served systems. The division provides replacement weapon systems to battalions based on the brigade priorities. At brigade level, systems normally covered by WSROs are tanks with four-man crews, mortars with four-man crews, and BFVs with three-man crews. Before these weapon systems are brought forward for delivery to the company team, the higher headquarters will supervise the completion of all necessary PCCs.



The company team commander develops his CSS plan by first determining exactly what supplies he has on hand and then accurately predicting his support requirements. To do this, he uses available information from his mission analysis and from war-gaming the plan with his subordinate leaders. This process is important not only in confirming the validity of the CSS plan but also in ensuring that the teamís support requests are submitted as early as possible.

The commander can formulate his CSS execution plan and submit support requests to the task force based on the results of his COA analysis and of the war-gaming and refinement of the maneuver plan. The CSS plan should provide answers to a variety of operational questions, such as the following examples:

  • Based on the nature of the operation and specific tactical factors, what types of support will the company team need?
  • In what quantifies will this support be required? The discussion will also cover these questions:
  • - Will emergency resupply be required during the battle?

    - Does this operation require prestock supplies?

  • What are the composition, disposition, and capabilities of the expected enemy threat and how will this affect CSS operations during the battle? The discussion will also cover these questions:
  • - Where and when will the expected contact occur?

    - Based on the nature and location of expected contact, what are the company teamís expected casualties and vehicle losses?

    - What impact will the enemyís special weapons capabilities (such as NBC) have on the battle and on expected CSS requirements?

    - How many EPWs are expected and where?

  • How will terrain and weather affect CSS operations during the battle? The discussion will also cover these questions:
  • - What ground will provide optimum security for trains elements?

    - What ground will provide optimum security for maintenance and casualty collection points?

    - What are the company teamís vehicle and casualty evacuation routes?

    - What are the teamís "dirty" routes for evacuation of contaminated personnel, vehicles, and equipment?

  • When and where will the company team need CSS? The discussion will also cover these questions:
  • - Based on the nature and location of expected contact, what are the best sites for the maintenance collection points?

    - Based on the nature and location of expected contact, what are the best sites for the casualty collection points? Where will the EPW collection points be located?

    - What LRPs will be active, and when, during the battle?

  • What are the criteria and triggers for the movement of the company combat trains?
  • What are the support priorities (by element and type of support)?
  • - Which platoon has priority for emergency Class III resupply?

    - Which platoon has priority for emergency Class V resupply?

  • Will there be lulls in the battle that will permit support elements to conduct resupply operations in relative safety? If no lulls are expected, how can the company team best minimize the danger to the CSS vehicles that will provide the required support?
  • Based on information developed during the CSS planning process, which resupply technique should be used?


As in all operational areas, thorough briefings and comprehensive rehearsals are important keys to effective CSS planning. These activities play a critical role in ensuring that the company team can execute its CSS plans efficiently, on time, and with the fewest possible problems. They allow the commander, his subordinate leaders, and each crewman to discover potential problem areas and to develop contingency plans to take care of unforeseen difficulties.

At both the task force and company team levels, commanders have several options for conducting CSS rehearsals. One is to integrate the CSS rehearsal into the unitís larger maneuver rehearsals. Another alternative is to have the unitís CSS operators conduct a separate rehearsal. Within the company team, for example, the commander could direct the XO and 1SG to rehearse CSS operations with the teamís PSGs, maintenance team chief, and senior aidman.



Aerial sustainment is the movement of personnel, equipment, material, and supplies by utility, cargo, and fixed-wing assets for operations other than air assault and combat support. These air movements are considered CSS missions because the aviation forces are not task organized with combined arms forces and because they do not move forces or assets whose primary mission is to engage or destroy enemy forces.


Casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) is an important part of the combat health support process. It is an aviation mission in which aircraft directly support ground units by providing transportation for WIAs from forward areas to the BSA or other designated collection and treatment facilities. CASEVAC operations include battlefield pickup of casualties, evacuation of casualties to initial treatment facilities, and subsequent movement of casualties to treatment facilities within the combat zone. Aeromedical assets are also employed to move medical personnel, supplies, and equipment.

NOTE: An important distinction must be made between the terms CASEVAC and MEDEVAC. CASEVAC can be performed by any Army aviation utility aircraft when tasked by the maneuver commander. CASEVAC requests are made through aviation channels. MEDEVAC is the process of moving casualties and/or patients while providing them with medical care en route. Most aviation units are not equipped or staffed to perform MEDEVAC, which is requested through medical channels. Refer to the discussion of evacuation procedures in Section 6 of this chapter.