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 21-093 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-4
A Staff Sergeant assigned to Fort Drum, New York, died in a PMV-4 mishap 1 September 2021 near the installation at 0915 local. The Soldier entered the highway off ramp at a suspected accelerated speed, lost control, overcorrected, and rolled the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene at approximately 0932. Seat belts are suspected to have been used since the Soldier had to be extracted from his vehicle. It is unknown if alcohol or drugs were contributing factors to the mishap.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 40th PMV-4 fatality of FY21.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, speeding endangers everyone on the road. In 2018, speeding killed 9,378 people. We all know the frustrations of modern life and juggling a busy schedule, but speed limits are put in place to protect all road users.

Speed affects your safety even when you are driving at the speed limit, but too fast for road conditions, such as during bad weather, when a road is under repair, or in an area at night that isn’t well lit.

What Drives Speeding?
Speeding is a type of aggressive driving behavior. Several factors have contributed to an overall rise in aggressive driving:

Traffic congestion is one of the most frequently mentioned contributing factors to aggressive driving, such as speeding. Drivers may respond by using aggressive driving behaviors, including speeding, changing lanes frequently, or becoming angry at anyone who they believe impedes their progress.

Running Late
Some people drive aggressively because they have too much to do and are running late for work, school, their next meeting, lesson, soccer game, or other appointment.

Disregard for Others and For the Law
Most motorists rarely drive aggressively, and some never do. For others, episodes of aggressive driving are frequent, and for a small proportion of motorists, it is their usual driving behavior. Occasional episodes of aggressive driving – such as speeding and changing lanes abruptly – might occur in response to specific situations, like when the driver is late for an important appointment, but is not the driver’s normal behavior.



PLR 21-090 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-4
A Private First Class assigned to Fort Hood, Texas, died in a PMV-4 mishap 21 August 2021 in Killeen, Texas, at 2130 local. Two Soldiers were riding as passengers in a civilian vehicle when they were struck on the side by another vehicle. One Soldier was ejected from the vehicle and his body was found near the scene of the mishap almost 24 hours later. Preliminary investigations determined the Soldier was not wearing a seat belt and alcohol was likely a factor. The other Soldier was discharged from the hospital with no injuries.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 38th PMV-4 fatalities of FY21.

AR 385-10 – The Army Safety Program

11–4. Safe motor vehicle operations
a. Occupant protection (HSPG Number 20).

(1) Occupant protective devices will be worn by all persons in or on an Army-owned motor vehicle whether on or off the installation.

(2) All personnel, to include Family members, guests, and visitors, will wear occupant protective devices at all times on an Army installation.

(3) Occupant protective devices will be worn by all Soldiers driving or riding in a PMV whether on or off the installation.

One of the safest choices drivers and passengers can make is to buckle up. Many Americans understand the lifesaving value of the seat belt – the national use rate was at 90.3% in 2020. Seat belt use in passenger vehicles saved an estimated 14,955 lives in 2017.

55% of those killed during the nighttime in 2019 were unrestrained.

Of the 22,215 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2019, 47% were not wearing seat belts.

Buckling up helps keep you safe and secure inside your vehicle, whereas not buckling up can result in being totally ejected from the vehicle in a crash, which is almost always deadly.

Air bags are not enough to protect you; in fact, the force of an air bag can seriously injure or even kill you if you’re not buckled up.

Improperly wearing a seat belt, such as putting the strap below your arm, puts you and your children at risk in a crash.

The benefits of buckling up are clear:

1. If you buckle up in the front seat of a passenger car, you can reduce your risk of: Fatal injury by 45% (Kahane, 2015) and moderate to critical injury by 50%

2. If you buckle up in a light truck, you can reduce your risk of: Fatal injury by 60% (Kahane, 2015) and moderate to critical injury by 65% (NHTSA, 1984)



PLR 21-087 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-4
An Active Guard Reserve Chief Warrant Officer 2 assigned to the U.S. Army Reserve in Phoenix, Arizona, died in a PMV-4 mishap 5 August 2021 in Mustang Ridge, Texas on, at approximately 1230 local. The Soldier departed his place of duty to meet his spouse for a pre-natal care appointment in Kyle, Texas. Due to heavy rain, the Soldier lost control of his vehicle, left the roadway and crashed. The Soldier’s spouse called 911 and he was pronounced dead at the scene by emergency medical services.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 37th PMV-4 fatality of FY21.

Tips for driving safely in the rain

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, there are nearly 1,235,000 automobile accidents each year related to weather. A majority of those accidents happen during rainfall (46%) and when the pavement is wet (70%).

Being behind the wheel with a rain-splattered windshield doesn't have to be an agitating, scary experience. The first step is to check your windshield wipers and replace them when streaking occurs. And while many of these other safety tips might seem like common sense, it’s always good to run through a mental checklist when driving in the rain.

Stay alert - Pay attention to what is going on around you when weather conditions aren’t ideal. Be extra cautious with merging lanes. Motorists should drive defensively, check around their vehicle and in blind spots, then take precautions when passing vehicles to prevent merging collisions.

Increase your visibility by turning on your headlights - It’s the law. All states require headlights to be on in bad weather, when visibility is low. Many states also require that when the windshield wipers are on due to bad weather, the headlights must also be on.

Beware of hydroplaning - When excess water sits on top of the road, tires can lose traction and hydroplane, causing your vehicle to slide uncontrollably. It doesn’t take much – driving 35 mph or faster with as little as one-twelfth of an inch of rain on the road makes any type of car, SUV, truck or four-wheel drive at risk for hydroplaning. Tires that have more wear also increase this risk, so be sure to check your tires' tread depth regularly.

As soon as it starts raining, slow down. If you start to hydroplane, you need to slow down even more. Begin by taking your foot off the gas pedal to allow the vehicle to slow down. Then slowly begin steering in the direction you are hydroplaning until you have control. It seems contradictory, but this actually helps your tires to realign with your vehicle – so they are both going the same direction. All steering needs to be slow. Don’t jerk the wheel or you could flip your car due to overcorrecting. Consider taking a driving course through your local DMV to learn how to drive safer on wet roads and better avoid hydroplaning. Check your local driving schools, too, to see if they offer safe-driving courses.

Slow down and turn off cruise control - Wet roads can be the most difficult to drive on. The grease and oil from cars produce a film on roads during dry conditions. When it rains, this layer becomes extremely slippery. Drive defensively in the rain and reduce your speed to below the speed limit to prevent the chance of hydroplaning. Add more car lengths between you and the car in front of you.

The cruise control should never be used during the rain. If you begin hydroplaning while the cruise control is on, you will actually be going faster. It could take a second or two for the cruise control function to disengage allowing you to take control of your vehicle and slow down. Those seconds could be critical.

Brake cautiously - One primary reason cars collide during rainstorms is because drivers slam on their brakes as if the roads were dry. The wet road causes the car to slide forward, often into the rear of another car. Brake gently and early to alert the driver behind you that you are slowing down.

Avoid the splash - The big splash you get when you drive through a huge puddle can be costly. If water enters the engine compartment of your vehicle, it can damage the internal systems. Drive around large puddles and avoid running water. Once you have safely passed, tap lightly on your brake pedal to dry off your brake rotors. If there is a middle lane, drive in it to help increase visibility and avoid deep water that might develop when rain runs off the sides of the road.

Driving in rain at night - Driving at night in the rain can be especially dangerous because of the glare of oncoming traffic, amplified by the rain on your windshield. To help reduce glare, you can dim your dashboard lights, avoid looking directly at oncoming headlights and clean both the inside and outside of your windshield. Be sure to use the ventilation system to help with the fog that might form on the inside of your windows.

Extra precautions might help ease the anxiety associated with driving in the rain, making it safer for everyone. If a crash does happen, make sure you know the steps to take afterward.



PLR 21-086 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-4
A Staff Sergeant on PCS leave from Camp Carroll, South Korea, died in a PMV-4 mishap 4 August 2021 in Augusta, Georgia, at 0658 local. The specific circumstances of the mishap, including the Soldier’s use of seat belt, 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 their report.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 36th PMV-4 fatality of FY21.



PLR 21-084 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims Two Soldiers' Lives

Posting Date:   /   Categories: Preliminary Loss Reports, PMV-4
A Specialist and Sergeant First Class assigned to Fort Bliss, Texas, died in a PMV-4 mishap 18 July 2021 in El Paso, Texas, at 0345 local. A Soldier was driving his PMV with one Soldier, believed to be the front-seat passenger, and one Soldier and civilian as back seat passengers, when they were involved in a multi-vehicle mishap. The driver and front-seat passenger were pronounced dead at the scene, requiring dental forensic identification. The Soldier in the backseat was transported to the local medical center for non-fatal injuries. Their medical prognosis is favorable; however, potential for a disability cannot be determined at this time. The civilian passenger was ejected from the vehicle. There is no clear indication of what caused the mishap, which is currently being investigated by the El Paso Police Department (EPPD). The division has initiated a line-of-duty investigation, and subordinate units have executed casualty assistance procedures to notify and assist surviving family members and units/Soldiers affected by the loss. The unit/safety points of contact are waiting for EPPD to release its official report. Alcohol as a contributing factor is unknown at this time, pending the medical examiner’s release of the toxicology report. Seat belt use is undetermined due to a post-crash fire.

Since 2016, the Army has lost an average of 33 Soldiers a year to off-duty PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 34th and 35th PMV-4 fatalities of FY21.

How to be a better passenger

Share the responsibilities:
Making yourself useful – whether you offer to operate the navigation or act as another set of eyes for the driver – can help avoid any accidents that would have happened due to distraction or driver fatigue. Keeping watch for any diversions and reading road signs will also help the driver to focus on the task at hand.

Banish backseat driving:
Keeping a watchful eye for things the driver might miss is helpful; criticizing every move the driver makes could be harmful. If the driver gets frustrated or annoyed, the likelihood is they’ll pay less attention to the road, which could lead to an easily avoidable accident.

Stay Alert – Avoid Distractions:
Distractions are everywhere today and becoming more and more difficult to avoid. Remember that, as a pedestrian, your eyes and ears are your best tools for keeping safe. Stay alert and watch out.

-Avoid distractions while operating a vehicle.
-Your focus should be on the task of driving safely.
-Pay attention to your surroundings, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the area you’re driving in.
-Focus as far to your front as possible, using peripheral vision to scan for obstacles.
-Maintain the posted speed limit.
-Always wear your seat belt and ensure your passengers do the same.