Importance of Planning, FM 21-76

IMPORTANCE OF PLANNING

3-1. Detailed prior planning is essential in potential survival situations. Including survival considerations in mission planning will enhance your chances of survival if an emergency occurs. For example, if your job requires that you work in a small, enclosed area that limits what you can carry on your person, plan where you can put your rucksack or your load-bearing equipment (LBE). Put it where it will not prevent you from getting out of the area quickly, yet where it is readily accessible.

3-2. One important aspect of prior planning is preventive medicine. Ensuring that you have no dental problems and that your immunizations are current will help you avoid potential dental or health problems. Some dental problems can progress to the point that you may not be able to eat enough to survive. Failure to keep your shots current may mean your body is not immune to diseases that are prevalent in the area.

3-3. Preparing and carrying a survival kit is as important as the considerations mentioned above. All Army aircraft have survival kits on board for the type of area over which they will fly. There are kits for over-water, hot climate, and cold climate survival. Each crewmember will also be wearing an aviator survival vest (Appendix A describes these survival kits). Know the location of these kits on the aircraft and what they contain in case of crash or ditching. There are also soldier kits for tropical and temperate survival. These kits are expensive and not always available to every soldier. However, if you know what these kits contain, and on what basis they are built, you will be able to plan and to prepare your own survival kit that may be better suited to you than an off-the-shelf one.

3-4. Even the smallest survival kit, if properly prepared, is invaluable when faced with a survival problem. However, before making your survival kit, consider your unit’s mission, the operational environment, and the equipment and vehicles assigned to your unit.

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