Road Crossing - Patch to Road
This technique works for small groups that cannot provide normal security
for crossing a small road or danger area. The main security for this is speed.
With practice 9 people can cross the road in 10 seconds. Once across everyone is
still in their position for marching (pointman, compassman, pace counter, TL etc).
Before you do a road crossing or go on patrol, your OPORDER should include
actions for danger areas and road crossings, chance enemy contact (engage or
withdraw) names of those who are designated for recon and search teams (R&S),
security teams, passwords, "number of the day" codes, etc. Your route should also be know in advance so you can
anticipate most danger areas and cross at points providing the most cover
Upon spotting a road crossing (or danger area) the Pointman (PM) sends the
hand signal to the rest of the team.
The team leader (TL) can decide to cross or not cross the road as well as choosing
another site in which to cross. Do not cross where you are if it is in a poor
location or a more secure area is available. If the TL decides to inspect the
area the group either goes into a 360 degree formation or if in a column or
staggard column each member takes 2 steps out and takes cover while providing
security. Pointman and rear security remain watching their respective areas of
The team leader may decide to have the recon and security team deploy to inspect
the far side of the danger area or parallel to the team's direction of travel. He
will give the hand signal for the R&S team and instructions on what he wants checked
out. The TL may want to provide instructions for GOTWA, number of the day etc.
Remember you may also be doing this at night and need a way to signal to each
other in the dark you are a friendly returning.
The R&S team will return and provide the TL with any info they gather
regarding the area. If unsafe they may move to another location to cross or
If they decide to cross the TL will designate near and far side rally points
in case they are ambushed before, during or after the crossing. SOPs can be set
up prior to movement for example designating 200 meters before and after
the road crossing as an ORP if contact is made. If members are across the road
and an enemy force attacks from the left or right, do not cross back into their
fire. Move to another postion 50 meters or more away and recross to rejoin your
If SOP or the TL decides you will cross and use the patch to road technique you
1. Give signal to use the patch to road technique by tapping your unit patch on
your left arm. Members will line up shoulder to shoulder even during the daytime.
Again the main security here is speed.
2. The pointman will procede into the road where he can get a good look to his
left to check for enemy activity. If none he will then turn to his right and
take up security to his right with his unit patch facing towards the road.
3. Number 2 man will move next to the pointman to provide security and either
quietly tell him "go" or squeeze his shoulder to let him know his position is now
covered. The pointman will now cross the road and take up security to his left
so his unit patch is again facing in towards the road.
4. Number 3 man will take number 2 man's position in the same way and number 2
will take the place of the pointman who will continue in the direction of travel.
This is repeated till all members are across. If done at night a head count can be conducted
to ensure all have crossed without gaining any extra people. If the second person
does this he can count up (including himself and the pointman) and go back into line.
First is an animated Gif made by E-Rock