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Positioning

HULL/TURRET DOWN / HIDE

Using terrain or emplacements, the vehicle is positioned so as to minimise exposure.

Between moves or while occupying an over watch position, a scout vehicle occupies one of three types of hasty positions: hide, turret-down, or hull-down.

The scout vehicle approaches the intended location from the rear along a covered route and occupies the desired position at the commander’s direction. The pro-words for these actions are as per title and would normally be given in a brief to crew or on the fly.

Important!

An example of how a command is given for hull down: “Driver, move to feature 346, position in Hull Down, bearing 186″
These commands can also be given on the fly: “Driver, reverse 100 meters over crest, position in hide
From US Army FM17-98

From US Army FM17-98

Hull Down
  • A hull down vehicle is positioned such that, from the direction of likely enemy threat, only the turret of the vehicle (and even then only enough of the turret to allow for the weapon to fire ) is visible.
  • This position is used to engage an enemy element. The vehicle commander halts the vehicle as soon as the gunner can view and engage the target area. The rest of the vehicle remains behind cover.
Turret Down
  • In this position, the vehicle commander halts the vehicle when the entire vehicle is behind cover but the commander can still observe the assigned sector from his position. The turret-down position is used when enemy engagement is possible and stealth is still desired.
  • When engagement is required, the vehicle moves into a hull-down position at the direction of the vehicle commander.
Hide
  • In this position, the vehicle commander hides the vehicle so that no part is exposed to the front. A dismounted observer must maintain visual contact with the assigned sector.
  • This position is used when enemy engagement is not imminent and stealth is desired or when a vehicle is moving to avoid direct fire from an undetected enemy.
Top Left: Turret down as seen from a target perspective.  Bottom Left: Hull down.  Right hand images demonstrate the value of clutter in further reducing the skyline/cresting of the vehicle.

Top Left: Turret down as seen from a target perspective.
Bottom Left: Hull down.
Right hand images demonstrate the value of clutter in further reducing the skyline/cresting of the vehicle.

Warning!

Generally speaking, and relative to the shape of the terrain, a vehicle masked behind terrain can be all 3 of these at the same time from different distances. It is therefore important to move up to a position SLOWLY.

As the vehicle moves into the position, it will become visible (and be able to scan and spot) positions in the far distance, while terrain in the near and medium distances may still not have LOS to or from it.

An example would be a narrow valley:

  1. As the vehicle moves up the reverse slope of one side of a valley, the vehicles LOS will be first only the opposing heights across the valley, while areas in the valley will still be obscured from the vehicle, and vice versa those areas will not be able to see the vehicle either.
  2. In fact, it may be impossible to scan the near distance at all, without going HULL UP to positions in the far distance. These areas are therefore considered DEAD GROUND to the vehicle and may require dismounted observation.