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Breaking down the 5 Point Contingency Plan - Nomad Fieldcraft

Since RECCE is a hot topic as of late, adding some knowledge to a very deep skillset/craft/task, whatever you want to call it, can never hurt. Counting_Coup_Tactical posted a very real definition of Reconnaissance on his Instagram about how its not a sexy thing, just tons of hard work and quietly suffering, but how successful recce is extremely critical on the battlefield. Adding to this very complex skill set and trying to simplify the breakdown of your contingency plan model for your patrol is something that will not only increase your effectiveness but simplify your communication amongst members when you need to part ways throughout your mission. Let’s take a dive into the 5 Point Contingency Plan and how simplifying it makes life a little less complicated. What is a contingency plan? Contingency is simply defined as a future event or circumstance which is possible but cannot be predicted with certainty. An overall emergency or SHTF plan when the most likely/most dangerous inevitably occurs. In a Recce context think different tasks or worse case scenarios, patrol getting separated, casualties, enemy contact seen vs unseen, ambushes, captured, etc. The list is pretty deep. Breaking down the plan Like most things from a mil background, the contingency breakdown can be simplified by a short 5 point list. A common simple acronym we can use is GOTWA to remember how to give any person in your patrol a contingency plan when you need to separate you patrol for the current given task. Anytime during your Recce you find yourself splitting the patrol, think setting up ORV, scouting out the VP, LPs or OPs, you should probably give a 5 Point to the dudes you are leaving even for a short time. G – Going. Where you are going that requires you to separate from remainder of your patrol. IE. “Hey dude, I am going 100m over this hill on a bearing of 90 degrees from this position to see if I can set up a vantage point in the woodline.” O - Others you are taking/leaving behind. Pretty straight forward, who is coming with you to do said task and who you are leaving behind. IE. “I am taking John with me to confirm vantage point, the rest of the patrol is chilling here with you.” T - Time you will be gone. A rough estimate of how long you should be gone completing said task. A quick time check with the dude you are giving this information to is not a bad idea, but ideally time check would be done for entire patrol before during prep. IE. “We should be only gone 15 minutes to confirm this vantage point.” W- What to do if you do not come back. Usually based on time restraints in this example, like not taking too long to return to remainder of patrol. IE. “If John and I do not show up in the 15 minutes, wait here another 15 minutes. If we still do not return in those 15, head back our last RV point and wait 15 minutes. Continue this until you and remainder of patrol return to patrol base or we find you.” A - Actions on contact for you or them. This one is also pretty clear, so your 2 separate parties now know what to do if either group comes under some enemy contact to deal with the now less than ideal situation and prevent both groups from killing each other due to negligence. Getting the dudes you are giving this 5 Point Contingency Plan to, to say it back to you confirms both parties are on the same page and know what is going on. Especially in less-than-ideal conditions when guys in your patrol are smoked and barely functioning to their highest level. Practicing the 5 Point in normal life Obviously practicing this conducting actual Recce exercises is one way, but like all things, this skill can be mastered at home in your normal life too. Maye come off as a bit of weirdo to your family, but it can be super simplified to get some reps in. Here is a super easy cheezy sample of a quick way to practice it. Scenario is you are at mall and you need to split up from your wife/girlfriend/husband/boyfriend to get different items and maximize your time. G – I am going to store A while you finish up here in store B so we can get our stuff done simultaneously O – I am going alone, you are staying here to finish up in store B T – I should only be gone 10 min maximum W - If I do not meet you back here in 10 min, wait out front for another 10 min, if I am still not back, wait for me at the foodcourt by restaurant C. A – I will most likely not be kidnapped, and I doubt you will be kidnapped This is another great example that you could even practice with kids to increase their situational awareness daily, but also increase their individual skills making them assets as well and prevent them from growing into more liabilities. Recce is a super deep topic that can and should be covered extensively, this breakdown is another thing to practice with your group. - Nomadic Fieldcraft

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