Preliminary Loss Reports (PLRs)

About Preliminary Loss Reports (PLRs)

Preliminary Loss Reports provide leaders with awareness of Army loss and highlight potential trends that affect combat readiness. Within 72 hours of a loss, PLRs provide a synopsis of the incident: unit, date of loss, description of the activity at the time of the death. PLRs do not identify root causes of an accident, as the investigation is ongoing. Further details will be available later on RMIS (account required).

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PLR 21-089 - PMV-2 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-2
A Sergeant First Class assigned to Fort Knox, Kentucky, died in a PMV-2 mishap 14 August 2021 at 1815 local. The Soldier was a passenger on a motorcycle that struck a truck entering the roadway. Emergency medical services arrived and pronounced the Soldier dead at the scene. She was not wearing any personal protective equipment.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 27 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-2 mishaps. This mishap was the 22nd off-duty PMV-2 fatality of FY21.

Motorcycle riders continue to be overrepresented in fatal traffic crashes. In 2019, 5,014 motorcyclists died. To keep everyone safe, we urge drivers and motorcyclists to share the road and be alert, and we're reminding motorcyclists to make themselves visible, to use U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) compliant motorcycle helmets, and to always ride sober.

Per vehicle miles traveled in 2019, motorcyclists were about 29 times more likely than passenger vehicle occupants to die in a motor vehicle crash, and were four times more likely to be injured. Safe motorcycling takes balance, coordination and good judgment.

If you're ever in a serious motorcycle crash, the best hope you have for protecting your brain is a helmet. Always wear a helmet that meets DOT Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 218. Look for the DOT symbol on the outside back of the helmet. Snell and ANSI labels located inside the helmet also show that the helmet meets the standards of those private, non-profit organizations.

Arms and legs should be completely covered when riding a motorcycle, ideally by wearing leather or heavy denim. In addition to providing protection in a crash, protective gear also helps prevent dehydration. Boots or shoes should be high enough to cover your ankles, while gloves allow for a better grip and help protect your hands in the event of a crash. Wearing brightly colored clothing with reflective material will make you more visible to other vehicle drivers.



PLR 21-088 - PMV-2 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-2
A Specialist assigned to the U.S. Army Reserve, Dublin, California, died in a PMV-2 mishap 24 July 2021 in Dublin at 1400 local. The Soldier’s unit was released from training at approximately 1100 to travel back to home of record, and a group of nine Soldiers went to a nearby indoor go-kart track. While waiting their turn at the track, the Soldier began operating his motorcycle at a high rate of speed when he lost control and slammed into a pillar. Emergency medical services were called and the Soldier was pronounced dead on the scene by the Alameda Fire Department at 1414. The unit was notified of the mishap at 1430 by one of the other Soldiers. The Dublin Sheriff’s Department is currently conducting an investigation.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 27 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-2 mishaps. This mishap was the 21st off-duty PMV-2 fatality of FY21.

Motorcycle Safety Tips

While motorcycles can be a fun, quick and convenient way to travel, there are higher risks involved compared to driving cars. Due to having less impact protection, many motorcycle accidents become fatal. Should a motorcyclist get into a motorcycle crash, they are 27 times more likely to die compared to those who get into car accidents. Accidents happen, but sadly many are preventable.

Here a few simple tips to increase motorcycle safety. These tips could be the difference in preventing a fatal motorcycle accident.

1. Be aware, be focused, be alert - It is important that you eliminate as many distractions as you can when riding a motorcycle. Be mindful of your surroundings and other cars around you. A sudden stop, change in traffic speed or other obstacles could spring up at any moment. Never operate a motorcycle drunk, sleepy or sluggish. Even small distractions can lead to serious injuries.

2. Assume no car can see you - Riding a motorcycle makes you less of a viewable obstacle on the road. Many motorcyclists tend to fall within a car driver’s blind spot. Also, car drivers are subconsciously paying more attention to other cars on the road than motorcycles. Many motorcycle accidents occurred when a car driver didn’t see a motorcycle and thought a motorcycle “came out of nowhere,” even though the motorcyclist was nearby for miles. It’s best to believe that none of the other cars on the road can see you so you don’t make a poor decision based on assumption.

3. Pay attention to the wheels of the cars in front of you - One useful tip for motorcyclists is to pay attention to the wheels of the cars in front of them. Seeing where the wheel pivots will help you discern where they are going if the car decides to change lanes or make a left turn. It also lets you know what direction the car is going if it decides to back up near you.

4. Make sure your path is clear - While you’re observing the wheels of the cars in front of you, check to make sure your path is clear. Many motorcycle crashes are caused by running over fallen tree branches, rocks, potholes, oil spills or other hazards on the road. While a car could possibly run over these hazards without a problem, due to the car’s weight and four-wheel drive, a motorcycle weighs significantly less and requires more balance on two wheels. Look ahead to avoid hazardous paths or pull over to a stop at a safe place if you see such obstacles ahead.



PLR 21-085 - PMV-2 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-2
A Staff Sergeant assigned to Fort Benning, Georgia, died in a PMV-2 mishap 1 August 2021 in Stewart County, Georgia, at 0110 local. The Soldier was traveling northbound on the wrong side of the road and struck a civilian pickup truck head-on. A civilian in the truck called 911. Emergency medical services and the Georgia State Patrol pronounced the Soldier dead at the scene. Speed and alcohol/drugs are not suspected as contributing factors to the mishap. The Soldier was wearing the required personal protective equipment and completed the required Motorcycle Safety Foundation courses. No injuries were reported for the civilians in the truck.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 27 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-2 mishaps. This mishap was the 20th off-duty PMV-2 fatality of FY21.

Motorcycle Safety Tips

Of the 20 PMV-2 mishaps this fiscal year, eight occurred during the hours of darkness, involving seven fatalities and one permanent partial disability (loss of leg below the knee). Three involved speeding, and alcohol may be involved in two others. Below are some tips to help you survive riding at night.

1. Lights and action:
Dirt and bugs caked on headlights can reduce how much light you have out front. It is critical to make sure your bike’s lights are working, properly aimed and have clean, intact lenses.

Carry spare bulbs and correct lighting circuit fuses in your pack. Finding a place to get those items after hours can be tough, particularly out on rural rides. Consider upgrading the bulb in older bike lighting systems. Halogens, other bulbs or even LED options may be available to upgrade from older-style sealed beam or incandescent units. These bulbs can throw a lot more light, depending on the make and year of your bike.

Check brake and turn signal lights to ensure they are working properly. Keeping the bike’s side-facing reflectors intact and visible is also important to being safe after dark. Reflective tape can be added to improve the visibility of the bike to other motorists.

2. See and be seen:
High-visibility and light-colored riding gear can make the rider more visible to other riders and drivers. In low and fading light or foggy conditions, fluorescent colors seem to glow by absorbing short-wavelength light not visible to the human eye and re-radiating it as long-wavelength light the human eye can see.

Jackets made with fluorescent colors in combination with retroreflective materials in logos, stripes or piping can make a rider highly visible at long range in another vehicle’s headlights. While you’re at it, don’t forget to gear up. This includes boots, stout riding pants, gloves, jacket, helmet, eye protection, and CE-approved impact protection.

3. Be visionary:
Those dark wrap-around sunglasses or that slick, but dark reflective helmet shield work great at high noon, but can be potential contributors to disaster late in the day or after dark. Have a backup plan for maximizing your vision with clear shatterproof riding glasses and/or clear helmet shield for the long ride home.

A photochromatic shield may also be an option. If you ride with a windshield and actually look through it instead of over it, keep that windshield clean. Even a moderate sized bug splat on the windshield creates a view obstruction covering square feet of area down the road.

Any roadside hazard — like a deer, coyote, raccoon or dog poised to kiss your front tire — can be difficult to see in broad daylight. Seeing them after dark requires giving yourself every advantage you can. Lots of wildlife becomes more active after dark, so seeing those critters at the roadside in time can make all the difference.

4. Lose speed, not control:
Highway-speed driving with anything after dark is more risky than it is in the daylight hours, but on a motorcycle, high speed alone can erase the positive safety effects of everything else you may do. The answer is simple; keep your travel speed down on the straights and even more so in the corners.

Stretch your following distances with other vehicles — the other drivers can’t see as well, either, so unexpected things looming in the headlights are more likely to cause them to panic stop. On roads that are unfamiliar, this becomes a critical factor; an innocent decreasing-radius corner that is simply fun to carve in daylight can fool you past the fog line and into the trees after dark.

5. Absolute sobriety:
Driving any motor vehicle with booze or any other intoxicants on board is inviting disaster; riding a motorcycle at night under those circumstances defies common sense.

So, if you’re going to be a night rider, even for a relatively short distance, slow down, gear up, stay straight and enjoy the ride safely because there will always be more great day rides, too!



PLR 21-081 - PMV-2 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-2
A Sergeant assigned to Fort Meade, Maryland, died in a PMV-2 mishap 27 July 2021 in Newark, Delaware, at 1700 local. The Soldier was operating his sport bike when he hit the side of a civilian SUV crossing the highway. Local authorities responded and the Soldier was pronounced dead at the scene. The Soldier was reportedly wearing personal protective equipment. He reportedly had not completed the proper Military SportBike RiderCourse (MSRC). It is unknown at this time if speed or alcohol were factors. This mishap is still under investigation by the local police department.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 27 Soldiers a year to PMV-2 mishaps. This preventable mishap was the 19th PMV-2 fatality of FY21 and above the number of fatalities for the same time period last year.

Here are some important safety tips to follow when negotiating a curve

Maintain a space cushion: A space cushion is a buffer around your vehicle that you maintain to allow room to maneuver, if necessary. Know what is in your space cushion, scan frequently and maintain awareness of other vehicles.

•Keep at least a three-second following distance in front of you – make it four or five seconds in inclement weather.
•Avoid distractions, including mobile phones and other devices, which can divert your attention, even with hands-free functionality.
•Aim high when looking out over the handlebars at the road.
•Keep your eyes moving, meaning don't just stare at the road ahead; make sure to check mirrors and other views frequently.
•Leave yourself an out; this means anticipating what would happen if you had to swerve or slam on the brakes.
•Position both hands firmly but comfortably on handlebars.
•Motorcycles have use of the complete traffic lane. Do not share lanes with motorcycles.
•Failure to yield the right-of-way to a motorcyclist is the most frequent driver error in collisions involving a motorcycle and another vehicle.
•Often drivers do not see motorcyclists until it is too late. This is why it is important for drivers to continually scan the roadway in front, to the rear and to the sides.
•Motorcycles accelerate, turn and stop more quickly than other vehicles. Bad weather, rough road surfaces or inexperience may cause a motorcyclist to fall. All of these are reasons why you should increase your following distance to four seconds or more when behind motorcycles.

Advanced Training: Required per AR 385-10

Advanced motorcycle training can teach you how to better control your motorcycle. Your control, handling and abilities on the bike will improve and you’ll learn to deal better with all kinds of weather, traffic and unexpected road conditions. You’ll be able to confidently handle dangerous driving situations, understand how to better maintain your motorcycle, and have a more smooth and safe ride.



PLR 21-080 - PMV-2 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-2
A Specialist assigned to Fort Bragg, North Carolina, died in a PMV-2 mishap 25 July 2021 in Fayetteville, North Carolina, at 0110 local. The Soldier was operating his motorcycle when he was cut off by a civilian vehicle, striking the rear of the vehicle. An onsite witness called emergency medical services and the Soldier was transported to the local medical center where he was pronounced dead by the attending physician. Initially, the driver of the civilian vehicle fled the scene; however, two days later, she turned herself in and was arrested. The Soldier completed the Motorcycle Safety Foundation’s Basic RiderCourse in May 2020 and purchased the motorcycle in early June 2021. Specific circumstances of the mishap, including speed and alcohol/drugs as contributing factors, are unknown at this time. The unit/safety points of contact are waiting for local law enforcement to release the final report.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 27 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-2 mishaps. This mishap was the 18th off-duty PMV-2 fatality of FY21.

Motorcycle Safety Tips

Night Riding: Quite often you’ll have to ride at night. After all, it is dark 50 percent of the time. Dusk is the worst time, when people’s eyes are adjusting from daylight to headlights. Be especially careful just after sunset. The following tips might help:

•Slow down a little when riding at night, especially on any sort of winding road.
•Use your own headlights and those of other traffic to keep an eye on the road surface. At night, it is more difficult to see that patch of sand or something that falls out of a pickup truck.
•Distance between you and the vehicle in front becomes even more important at night. Give yourself room to react.
•Wear a clear face shield without scratches. A scratched shield can create light refraction that might confuse you; two headlights can look like four, and you don’t know who is coming from where.
•One of your biggest hazards at night may be another driver coming from a few hours of drinking.
•Be especially alert for drivers and vehicles doing odd things, like weaving in and out of traffic, and give them lots of room.