In the last issue I covered the review of fundamentals and drills we conducted prior to the start of the UBC curriculum.
The UBC scenario:
You and a partner are driving in an urban environment. The two of you are armed with carbines and sidearms. Each of you is equipped with a bug-out bag (BOB) that contains the bulk of your ammunition supply and other essentials.
Your vehicle is ambushed by multiple Threats at your front and to either side. You have to deal with the ambush and, since the vehicle has been immobilized, leave it and bound (leap-frog) to the rear, engaging Threats as they appear and covering each other’s retreat.
The typical urban area has streets laid out in parallel and intersecting lines. In normal times, the system is designed to facilitate rapid and efficient movement of people and vehicles. Don’t forget this. It also usually has multi-story structures above you and a sewer or storm drain system below you.
If you’re standing in the center of an intersection the possible ‘avenues of approach’ your enemy can take to get at you are all around you, above and below you. Due to the political or tactical situation, they may not all be probable avenues of approach, but the point remains that fighting in a city presents a unique set of problems.
Now, before you begin to question the relevancy of this training to the average private citizen, this class was not about preparing for combat or work as a private contractor in Afghanistan. This class was about learning how to integrate basic carbine fighting skills in a realistic and meaningful way.
Here’s a partial list of the sub-tasks (skill sets) we worked on during the class:
2. Use of cover
3. Unconventional shooting positions
4. Firing from the support side
5. Communicating with a partner
6. Speed, emergency and tactical reloads
7. Engaging multiple Threats
8. Engaging Threats to either side
10. Shooting on the move
11. Clearing malfunctions
12. Consolidating gear
No high speed / low drag / special ops stuff, just using a real life event as the vehicle to work on basic (as in ‘everybody needs to know these’) fighting techniques and integrate them into a seamless, cohesive scenario.
Back to the range, targets were arranged to represent Threats coming from the front and down side streets. Due to range limitations we could not train for Threats to the rear, so, for safety reasons, we considered the ‘street’ (range) directly to your rear to be safe. How-ever, each scenario involved Threats approaching down intersecting streets behind you. This meant that you had to watch for Threats on either side as you made your way to the rear.
Again, for safety reasons, we had no T’s above the berm.
Crawl, walk, run
During dry runs prior to the start of the class, the instructors had demonstrated for themselves how easily adrenaline could turn an iteration intended to be done at ‘crawl’ speed into a full speed, live fire rehearsal. We couldn’t allow that, not for the first few iterations, anyway. We were going to be shooting from a car, past a car, over and around team-mates, etc. These things are perfectly safe when done correctly. Getting to the point we can do them correctly and safely and not having hurt anyone in the process was the problem.
Now, most of the students had never fired a round while another human was downrange, much less covering, with live fire, sectors on either side of a person. But, that is NOT an improbable situation to find ourselves in. Even if we never work with a partner, we could easily find ourselves in a situation where people that absolutely must NOT be shot are in close proximity to people we abolutely must shoot. We must know how to handle this probability.
Next issue: Control measures