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a. Equipment Requirements:

(1) Two serviceable ponchos.

(2) Two weapons (poles can be used in lieu of weapons).

(3) Two rucksacks per team.

(4) 10 feet of utility cord per team.

(5) One sling rope per team.

b. Conditions: Poncho rafts are used to cross water obstacles when any or all of the following conditions are found:

(1) The water obstacle is too wide for 120foot rope.

(2) No sufficient near or far shore anchor points are available to allow rope bridge construction.

(3) Under no circumstances will poncho rafts be used as a means to cross a water obstacle if an unusually swift current is present.

c. Choosing a crossing site: Before a crossing site is used, a thorough reconnaissance of the immediate area is made. Analyzing the situation using METTTC, the patrol leader chooses a crossing site that offers as much cover and concealment as possible and has entrance and exit points that are as shallow as possible. For speed of movement it is best to choose a crossing site that has near and far shore banks that are easily traversed by an individual Commando.

d. Execution Phase: Steps for the construction of a poncho raft:

(1) Pair off the unit/patrol in order to have the necessary equipment.

(2) Tie off the hood of one poncho and lay out on the ground with the hood up.

(3) Weapons are then placed in the center of the poncho, approximately 18 inches apart, muzzle to butt.  If possible, use strong straight branches leaving weapons out and snap linked to the raft for use if needed.

(4) Next, rucksacks and LCE are placed between the weapons/branches with the two individuals placing their rucksacks as far apart as possible.

(5) The two will then start to undress (bottom to top), first with their boots, taking the laces completely out for subsequent use as tie downs if necessary).

(6) The boots are then placed over muzzle/butt of weapon toe in.

(7) Members continue to undress, folding each item neatly and placing on top of their boots.

(8) Once all of the equipment is placed between the two weapons or poles, the poncho is snapped together. The snapped portion of the poncho is then lifted into the air and tightly rolled down to the equipment. Start at the center and work out to the end of the raft creating pigtails at the end. This is accomplished much easier if done by both soldiers together. The pigtailed ends are then folded in toward the center top of the raft and tied off with a single boot lace.

(9) The other poncho is then laid out on the ground with the hood up and the first poncho with equipment is placed in its center. The second poncho is then snapped, rolled and tied in the same manner as the first poncho. The third and fourth boot laces (or utility cord) are then tied around the raft approximately one foot from each end for added security. The poncho raft is now complete.

NOTE: The patrol leader must analyze the situation using METTTC and make a decision on the uniform for crossing the water obstacle, i.e., weapons inside the poncho raft or slung across the back, remaining dressed or stripped down with clothes inside raft.

95. BOAT OPERATIONS. Use of inland and coastal waterways may add flexibility, surprise, and speed to tactical operations. Use of these waterways will also increase the load carrying capacity of normal dismounted units.



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