The Ship to Shore Control Party Organization and Functions
Section 1. The Scope of Ship to Shore Control Section 2. Control Party Personnel Section 3. Control Vessels, Craft and Boats Section 4. Control Party Communications Section 5. Ship to Shore Control Procedure
Section 1. The Scope of Ship to Shore Control
- The functions and scope of the Ship to Shore Control Party Organization as set forth in Chapter V and VI of FTP 211 have been widely extended with the development and use of Landing Vehicles Tracked (LVTs), and Amphibian Trucks (DUKWs) in making amphibious landings where landing boats have been unable to beach directly due to barrier and fringe reefs, and artificial barriers located to seaward of and on the landing beaches.
- The conditions which require the use of LVTs in the assault and further use of all types of amphibious vehicles in the unloading phase of an operation, combined with the special problems involved in unloading to beaches generally inaccessible to landing craft, have introduced new procedures in the Ship to Shore Movement. Continued close in control of the assault landing has become necessary.
- The scope of Ship to Shore Control has been extended to cover not only the landing of troops in assault and their reserves, but the landing of supporting units, artillery, heavy equipment, and the ammunition and supplies necessary to support the landing forces. This control further extends to the entire unloading phase of the assault shipping, including the handling of off-shore traffic, establishment of floating dumps, supervision of LVT and DUKW transfer stations and traffic through natural or artificial channels. The Control Party Organization is especially necessary in areas where essential details of military and hydrographic information are incomplete.
Section 2. Control Party Personnel
- The Control Party Personnel will be composed of the following:
- The Central Control Officer, assigned by the Force or Amphibious Group Commander, is charged with overall supervision of the Ship to Shore Movement. He is in direct charge of the movement of the scheduled assault waves to and across the Line of
Departure and to the limits of navigation by control vessels and guide boats. (Beyond this point, responsibility for the landing passes to the troop command). After the despatch of the scheduled assault waves, he coordinates, through the Transport Squadron and Transport Division Control Officers, the movement of all water transportation to the landing beaches, throughout the remainder of the landing and unloading operations.
- The Assistant Central Control Officer, assigned by the Force or Amphibious Group Commander, aids the Central Control Officer in the execution of his duties.
- The Transport Squadron Control Officer, assigned by the Transport Squadron Commander, is responsible for the Ship to Shore Movement of troops and equipment from his squadron to the beaches assigned them in the Landing Attack Plan. He is responsible to the Central Control Officer for the proper assembly, formation, and dispatch of the assault waves destined for his squadron beaches. Following the assault, he controls, through his Transport Division Control Officers, the movement of all water transportation to his squadron beaches, as directed by the Transport Squadron Commander.
- The Assistant Transport Squadron Control Officer, assigned by the Transport Squadron Commander, aids the Transport Squadron Control Officer in the execution of his duties.
- The Transport Division Control Officer, assigned by the Transport Division Commander, is in charge of the movement in assault of landing craft and landing vehicles across the Line of Departure to the Transport Division (Regimental) beaches. In subsequent operations for reinforcement and supply, he controls the movement of water transportation assigned to the beaches off which he exercises control.
- The Assistant Transport Division Control Officer, assigned by the Transport Division Commander, aids the Transport Division Control Officer in the execution of his duties.
- The Boat Group Commander, detailed from the Assault Transports for the landing attack, are in charge of the Ship to Shore Movement of the Boat Group and execute the functions set forth in Chapter III of this doctrine.
- The Assistant Boat Group Commanders, detailed from the Assault Transports for the landing attack, assist the Boat Group Commanders and execute the functions set forth in Chapter III of this doctrine.
- Boat Wave Commanders, detailed from the Assault Transports for the landing attack, are in charge of the Ship to Shore Movement for the assigned boat wave and execute the functions set forth in Chapter III of this doctrine.
- The LVT Wave Guide Officers, detailed from the Assault Transports for the landing attack, embark at the staging area in the LSTs carrying the LVTs of the waves which they are to guide to the beach. They will take with them, from the Assault Transports, the necessary radio equipment for use in LCV(P)s, carried by the LSTs, which will be used as guide boats. They are in charge of the Ship-to-Shore Movement of LVT waves to the limits of guide boat navigation.
- Control Vessels, Craft, and Landing Boat operating personnel. The Commanding Officers of Control Vessels and Craft are responsible to the Control Officer embarked and will take orders from him as to the positioning and movement of the Control Vessel relative to the Line of Departure. All communication equipment and personnel are completely at the disposal of the Control Officer and will be used as he may direct. When practicable, Control Vessels will be anchored in their proper station as required to mark the location and limits of the Line of Departure.
- Troop Advisers, detailed from the Operations and Logistics Sections of the Corps, Divisional, and Regimental headquarters, will be embarked in the Central Control, transport Squadron Control, and the Transport Division Control Vessels, respectively. Officers of the Operations Section will be landed as soon as conditions permit. Officers of the Logistics Sections will remain on board to assist throughout the acute stages of unloading. Officers from the LVT Battalions will be embarked in all Transport Division Control vessels, and in Secondary Control vessels, as necessary, to assist in exercising control over LVT waves. More than one officer from each of the above sections, with the addition of a clerk assistant to the Logistics Officer, is not necessary nor desired because of limited space and accommodations. When necessary, however, radio equipment required for communication with the troops and which is not already installed in the Control Vessel may be brought aboard together with personnel needed for operation. Personnel and gear necessary for subsequent operations ashore, but not actually required by the troop adviser while embarked in the Control Vessel, will not be brought on board.
- Central Control Officers, Transport Squadron Control Officers, Transport Squadron Control Officers, Transport Division Control Officers and their Assistants will have a thorough knowledge of assault landing procedures, the capabilities of all types of landing craft, the duties of both beach and shore parties, hydrographic conditions affecting landings, the operation of pontoon causeways, and the loading and unloading problems and procedures of all types of craft and ships supporting the assault. They must have a complete knowledge of the scheme of maneuver of the troops, and the tactical plan for the landing.
- During the planning stages prior to an operation, these officers will prepare detailed plans for Ship to Shore Control in close cooperation with Troop Commanders, Beachmasters, and Shore Party Commanders. During the operation they will be assigned to Control Vessels, Craft and Boats and execute control functions in accordance with the tactical plan.
- The regular complements of Control Vessels, Craft and Landing Boats assigned to the Control Organization are trained for their specialized duties. Insofar as practicable, officer personnel will be retained in this assignment, in order to provide for a maximum assurance of successful control in the assault phase. These officers will assist the Control personnel placed on board for the operation.
Section 3. Control Vessels, Craft and Boats
- Vessels, craft and landing boats utilized in Control of Ship to Shore Operations are classified as Primary, Secondary and Special.
- Primary Control Vessels are those used by the Central Control Officer, the Transport Squadron Control Officers and Transport Division Control Officers. The Transport Division Control Vessels remain at the Line of Departure to serve as reference vessels throughout the landing. The Central Control Vessel and the Transport Squadron Control Vessels operate to seaward of the Line of Departure within their respective sectors of responsibility. The Central Control Vessel and the Transport squadron Control Vessel, generally PCEs, or PCSs, will be large enough to accommodate the Central and Transport Squadron Control Parties and their Troop Advisors. The Transport Division Control Vessel, generally a PC, will be large enough to accommodate the Transport Division Control Party with Troop Advisors, but small enough to present an inconspicuous target at the Line of Departure. These vessels will be provided with efficient navigation equipment, including radar, to enable them to determine and maintain their exact assigned positions in the beach approaches. They will be provided with additional control communication equipment, as specified in Section 4 of this Chapter.
- Secondary Control Vessels are those used to assist the Transport Division Control Vessels in marking the Line of Departure, and later in supervising transfer from LCV(P)s to LVTs in the transfer Area and in regulating traffic inshore of the Line of Departure. They are provided with the same communication equipment and personnel as Primary Control Vessels and may have embarked the Assistant Transport Division Control Officers. They are available as relief or replacement for Primary Control Vessels as required.
- Special Control Vessels are those used by Corps and Division troops Commanders, Landing Craft Flotilla Commanders, and Senior Beachmaster and Shore Party Commander. The vessels used by Corps or Division Troop Commanders and Landing Craft Flotilla Commanders will generally be PCSs or PCs, provided with additional communication facilities and accommodations for the additional personnel. The vessel used by the Senior Beachmaster and Shore party Commander will be adequate in size to act as a floating command post and sufficiently inconspicuous to carry on inshore operations.
- Control Vessels will be provided with tenders, generally Landing boats.
- The same control vessels and craft will be used for Ship to Shore Control functions in successive operations, to utilize the experience acquired by personnel and to avoid the necessity for new installations.
Section 4. Control Party Communications
- To insure the rapid receipt and dissemination of orders and information necessary for effective Ship to Shore Control in the Assault Phase, rapid and positive communications must be established and maintained. Each Control Vessel must have adequate communication:
- With higher echelons,
- With other Control Vessels,
- With supporting units,
- With Landing Craft, landing boats, LVTs and DUKWs and,
- At the earliest possible moment with the nucleus communication team of the beach party which is landed on each battalion beach.
- In addition to their standard equipment, Control Vessels will have installed the following, or similar improved radio equipment: --
2 SCR 608
1 SCR 610
1 SCR 508
They will also have aboard, ready for use if required, at least one other SCR 610 or SCR 619, and 2 SCR 536. Control Vessels will be provided with inter-communication equipment and with an effective loud-speaker system for communication with nearby craft.
- The troops will provide communication equipment and personnel required by them above the facilities provided by the Control Vessel and Control Communication Team. Wherever possible, the communication equipment and personnel provided by the Control Vessel will be used by troops. This is necessary in order to eliminate crowding and duplication of effort.
- To operate the additional communication equipment, a specially trained control communication team, consisting of one officer, four radiomen, two signalmen and a signalman striker will be placed on board each Primary Control Vessel, each Special Control Vessel, and each Secondary Control Vessel. Communication personnel of Secondary Control Craft will receive special instruction at Amphibious Force Schools. The communication officers and personnel of Control vessels will assist the Control Communication teams placed on board in maintaining communications. To this end they will be given special training in control procedures.
Section 5. Ship to Shore Control Procedure
- In accordance with the Landing Attack Plan and when directed by the Officer in Tactical Command, the Control Vessels will take their assigned stations. The Transport Division Control Vessels will take station in the center of their respective regimental Lines of Departure. The Central Control vessel and the Transport Squadron Control Vessels will operate within their respective sectors of responsibility.
- If the assault landing is to be made by landing boats exclusively, the landing boats will be led to the Line of Departure by the Boat Group Commanders.
- If the assault landing is to be made by LVTs, the LVTs will be formed into waves and guided to the Line of Departure by LVT guide boats.
- In a coordinated landing, the first assault wave will be dispatched by the Central Control Officer to meet the scheduled H-Hour. Prior to dispatching this wave, he will insure that all assault elements are in readiness and will advise the OTC if any delay in H-Hour is necessary.
- The following procedure will be employed in the dispatch of assault waves from the Line of Departure to the beach:
- At departure time minus five (5) minutes, the Control Vessels at the Line of Departure will hoist the Numeral ONE flag at the dip, following the motions of the Central Control Vessel.
- At departure time minus two (2) minutes, the Number ONE Flag will be two-blocked.
- At dispatching time, the Numeral ONE Flag will be hauled down.
- These signals will be paralleled by voice radio from the Central Control Vessel.
- For all succeeding waves:
- The Transport Division Control Vessel at the Line of Departure will two-block the Numeral flag of the wave to be dispatched two (2) minutes prior to the scheduled time of dispatching.
- The Numeral flag will be hauled down at the dispatching time in accordance with the landing schedule.
- The hauling down of the Numeral flag of a designated wave will be the signal for the movement of the wave from the Line of Departure.
- When the assault landing is made using LVTs, the leading assault waves will be guided from the Line of Departure by the LVT wave guide boats. By regulating their speed in accordance with their own observations of time and distance from the beach, and in accordance with reports from the Central Control Officer, who will check their progress by a radar plot of the first wave, the Wave Guide Officers will ensure that the first wave hits the proper beach at the designated time. This is vitally necessary in order that naval and air bombardment may proceed according to schedule, without endangering our own troops and boats in the first wave. If possible, the first wave will be landed on time as scheduled, but under no circumstances will it land ahead of schedule.
- LVT wave guide boats will lead succeeding LVT waves from the Line of Departure when dispatched, keeping the wave in the right lane, on the proper course and properly timed to arrive at the landing beach as scheduled. LVT wave guide boats will guide the LVT waves as close inshore as is navigationally practicable. Upon completion of this evolution, the LVT wave guide boats will take station to the seaward at the flanks of the landing lanes to rally returning LVTs.
- After all scheduled waves have been dispatched, each Transport Division Control Officer will call up and dispatch reserve waves upon advice from the Regimental Commander or his representative.
- Upon landing of the assault waves, designated Secondary Control Craft will be assigned as traffic control boats and will take station in an area safe for navigation, immediately to seaward of the breaker line but beyond the range of small arms fire from the beach and will assist in directing the flow of traffic to the beach. Other Secondary Control craft may be assigned as tenders to Primary Control Vessels, or to regulate traffic in beach approaches where congestion is likely to occur.
- If the beach is obstructed to landing boats, it will be necessary to transfer personnel and cargo from landing boats to LVTs in a Transfer Area as described in Chapter IV of this doctrine.
- If a Transfer Area is employed, the procedure is as follows:
- LVT guide boats will rally LVTs at the flanks of the LVT lane and seaward of the obstructions and guide them to the Transfer Area.
- Reserve troops and cargo, embarked in boats, will be formed in waves at the Line of Departure as requested by the Troop representatives.
- The Secondary Control Officer at the Transfer Area will advise the Transport Division Control Officer of the landing boats required to load available LVTs in the Transfer Area.
- The Transport Division Control Officer will dispatch the required number of landing boats to the Transfer Area.
- If cargo rendezvous areas (floating dumps) are employed, Secondary Control Craft will be assigned as Cargo Rendezvous Area Control Craft and will carry out the functions set forth in Section 5, Chapter IV of this doctrine.
- During unloading operations, the Central Control Officer will coordinate unloading activity to insure that all unloading craft are fully utilized and that every request by the beach party organization and the troops is met without delay. Necessary control of operations in reinforcement, supply and evacuation requiring coordination by the Force or Group Commander is normally exercised through the Central Control Officer who is the Force or Group Commander's direct representative at the scene of action.
- Each Transport Squadron Control Officer will control traffic to and from the beaches on which the troops landed from his squadron are established. Necessary control of operations in reinforcement, supply and evacuation by the Transport Squadron Commander is exercised through the Squadron and Division Control Officers.
- The Central, Transport Squadron and Transport Division Control Officers will remain in close communication with landing craft flotilla commanders, officers in charge of pontoon barges, boat Group Commanders and the Beachmaster Organization in order that modifications in unloading operations may be carried out promptly.
- The Control Party will direct the flow of casualties from the beaches to transports and hospital LSTs.
- Figure 1 [sic: no figure included] illustrates the Ship to Shore Movement in a typical corps landing. It shows the relationship between the echelons of the Control Party and the importance of an efficient control organization during a large scale assault landing.
Section 6. LST and LSM Control Procedure
- Beaching, loading, unloading, and control of LSTs and LSMs is a command function and a direct responsibility of the Flotilla and Group Commanders to which LSTs and LSMs are assigned for operational control.
- Normally, LSTs and LSMs are assigned to the operational control of a Flotilla Commander acting as a Task Group or Task Unit Commander. The Flotilla Commander will assign one or more of his most experienced LST or LSM Group Commanders as Beaching Officer, and, if available, an additional Group Commander as Loading Officer. Where a Group Commander is in operational command, he will perform both of these duties, or delegate one or more of them to subordinate Group Commanders. For small operations, both Beaching and Loading Officer duties may be performed by the same Commander.
- The Flotilla Commander (or Group Commander in operational command) will decide on all beaching slots and will issue orders to specific ships to beach in assigned slots and to retract from the beach. No other authority will issue such orders direct to ships. Other agencies will request or direct the Commander having operational command to issue orders to his ships to beach or retract as may be desired. Normally, requests to beach LSTs and LSMs will originate with the Shore Party Commander and will be transmitted to Flotilla or Group Commanders via the Beachmaster and Control Officer. When the Control Officer secures, requests will go direct from Beachmaster to Flotilla, or Group, Commander.
- The Flotilla (Group) Commander in operational command will closely supervise loading and unloading of his ships through the Loading Officer and by such personal inspection as may be necessary.
- Beaching Officer.
- Past experience has indicated that hydrographic and beaching information has not been passed along from ship to ship, with the result that knowledge as to the peculiarities of a beach becomes lost and ships coming in late have no more information about the beaching sites than the first ones had.
- At the objective, the Beaching Officer will thoroughly inspect a new LST-LSM beach, and, if practicable, in consultation and cooperation with the Beachmaster and UDT representative, will select the best beaching slots, have them marked by buoys and ranges, and buoy off-lying dangers to navigation. He will become thoroughly familiar with the hydrography and approaches to any beach, organized or new, before beaching his ships.
- The Beaching Officer will personally supervise the control of each ship of the task unit while beaching, advising the Commanding Officer either personally on the conn, by electric megaphone, or by voice radio, as to approach, ranges, difficulties to be encountered, speed to use, and, during his approach, as to whether his ship is approaching satisfactorily as to position, course, speed, etc., and, when necessary, to back clear and make a new approach. Beaching Officer may take station on the beach or in a small boat (with suitable voice radio communication) or pilot the ship to its slot. For training of Commanding Officers in most expeditious beaching, past experience has indicated that a boat is the best Control Station off a reef and a radio jeep is the best arrangement on a good sand beach.
- For a large task unit or for extended operations at the objective, the Flotilla Commander should employ several LST and LSM Group Commanders as Beaching Officers.
- The Beaching Officer, before being relieved or leaving area, will ensure that the new Beaching Officer has become thoroughly familiar with all information which he possessed as to the LST-LSM beach. He shall also see that the LST and LSM officers of the Beachmaster's staff thoroughly understand conditions existing in the beaching area for which he has been responsible.
- For best operation at the objective, the Flotilla Commander, Beaching, and Loading Officers must work together as a highly coordinated team. The Flotilla Commander takes station in his flagship close off assigned beaches. Instructions or requests for beaching ships or change of priority are received by the Flotilla Commander from the Attack Force or Transport Squadron Commander, or from the Shore Party Commander via Beachmaster and Control Officer. In the absence of other orders, and after general unloading of LST and LSM types has been directed by competent authority, the Flotilla Commander follows his priority list, ordering a ship in to beach as a slot is about to become vacant, instructing the ship to report to the Beaching Officer off the specified beach and slot, addressing the message for information to the Beaching Officer or Loading Officer.
- The Beaching Officer supervises retraction of ship then beached in the assigned slot. He meets the incoming ship and advises and directs it to its slot. The Loading Officer boards the ship, arranges for vehicles to unload the ship, and otherwise advises and assists the ship's Commanding Officer and personnel and ensures that through inexperience personnel and cargo are not endangered and that unloading is expeditious.
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