1-68. Fire support team and combat medics normally are attached anytime the platoon deploys.



1-69. The forward observer along with his RTO, is the platoon subject matter experton indirect planning and execution. The forward observer is the primary observer for all assets, including company mortars (if assigned), battalion mortars, field artillery , and other allocated fire support assets. He is responsible for locating targets, and calling and adjusting indirect fires. The forward observer also knows the mission and concept of operation, specifically the platoon’s scheme of maneuver and concept of fires, and is the platoon leader's indirect fire expert. The forward observer also —

  • Informs the fire support team of the platoon situation, location, and indirect fire support requirements.
  • Prepares and uses maps, overlays, and terrain sketches.
  • Calls for and adjusts indirect fires. (See figure 1-6.)
  • Operates as a team with the fire support radiotelephone operator.
  • Selects targets to support the platoon’s mission.
  • Selects observation posts and movement routes to and from selected targets.
  • Operates digital message devices and maintains communication with the company and battalion fire support officer (FSO).
  • Maintains grid coordinates of his location.
  • Prepares to employ close air support (CAS) assets. (See figure 1-7.)


Indirect fire request format

Figure 1-6. Indirect fire request format

Close air support 9-line request example

Figure 1-7. Close air support 9-line request example



1-70. Combat medics are assigned to the medical platoon and are tasked to support the Infantry battalion. Combat medics are allocated to the Infantry companies on the basis of one combat medic per platoon, and one senior combat medic per company. The platoon combat medic or the company senior combat medic goes to the casualty’s location, or the casualty is brought to the combat medic at the CCP. The CCP combat medic makes his assessment, administers initial medical care, initiates a DD Form 1380 (Tactical Combat Casualty Care [TCCC] Card) (see figure 1-8) then, requests evacuation or returns the individual to duty. (Refer to AR 40-66 for details and instructions on completing the form.)

DD Form 1380, Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) Card

Figure 1-8. DD Form 1380, Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) Card

1-71. The Infantry platoon combat medic usually locates with, or near, the platoon sergeant . When the platoon moves on foot in the platoon column formation, the combat medic positions himself near the platoon sergeant. If the platoon is mounted, the combat medic usually rides in the same vehicle as the platoon sergeant. Emergency medical treatment (EMT) procedures performed by the combat medic may include opening an airway, starting intravenous (IV) fluids, controlling hemorrhage, preventing or treating for shock, splinting fractures or suspected fractures, and providing relief for pain.

1-72. The Infantry platoon combat medic is trained under the supervision of the battalion surgeon or physician’s assistant and medical platoon leader. The platoon combat medic is responsible for —

  • Triaging injured, wounded, or ill friendly and enemy personnel for priority of treatment.
  • Conducting sick call screening.
  • Assisting in the evacuation of sick, injured, or wounded personnel under the direction of the platoon sergeant.
  • Assisting in the training of the platoon’s combat lifesavers in enhanced first-aid procedures.
  • Requisitioning Class VIII supplies from the BAS for the platoon according to the tactical SOPs.
  • Recommending locations for platoon casualty collection point.
  • Providing guidance to the platoon’s combat lifesavers as required.