NEWS | Feb. 6, 2020

M113-Series FOV: Tow Cables the Only Way to Go!

Avoid potential injury or loss of life by reading and heeding this article
U.S. Army Soldiers with the Opposing Forces (OPFOR) roll out in an M113 Armored Personnel Carrier following a simulated battle during Combined Resolve XII in Hohenfels Training Area, Germany Aug. 19, 2019. Combined Resolve is a biannual U.S. Army Europe and 7th Army Training Command-led exercise intended to evaluate and certify the readiness and interoperability of US forces mobilized to Europe in support of Atlantic Resolve.


Be aware that your M113-series carrier can safely tow only up to 14,500 pounds using the pintle and tow bar. In other words, don’t attempt to tow another M113-series vehicle using the pintle and tow bar. That can get Soldiers hurt and damage vehicles.
In a recent incident, an M577A3 command post carrier used a tow bar to tow a disabled M113A3 down a steep slope. The end result was that the vehicles jack-knifed and two Soldiers were ejected from one of the carriers as it rolled over. One Soldier was pinned underneath the vehicle and lost part of his leg!
There’s a very high chance that using an M113-series carrier to tow a disabled carrier with the pintle and tow bar will end badly.
Instead, use tow cables in an X pattern. The towing vehicle must be the same size or larger than the disabled carrier. And only attempt towing with cables on a flat surface. If the disabled carrier requires towing over surfaces with varying grades, use an M88-series recovery vehicle.    
The towing speed should not exceed of 3-5 mph. That speed allows the towed carrier to perform limited braking and steering as long as it has no transmission damage.
Eyeball the towing procedures in TM 9-2350-277-10 (Mar 12, w/Ch 1, Dec 13) and TM 9-2350-366-10 (Mar 12). Also, refer to ATP 4-31/MCRP 4-11.4 for recovery and battle damage assessment and repair (BDAR) guidance.
Check out TACOM Ground Safety Action Message 20-006 for more info: