Engaging Moving Targets

In combat, it is unlikely that a target will remain stationary. The enemy will move quickly from cover to cover, exposing himself for the shortest possible time. Therefore, a Marine must quickly engage a moving target before it disappears.

a. Types of Moving Targets. There are two types of moving targets: moving targets and stop and go targets. Moving targets move in a consistent manner and remain in a Marine's field of vision. A walking or running man is an example of a moving target. A stop and go target appears and disappears during its movement. A stop and go target will present itself for only a short time before it reestablishes cover. An enemy moving from cover to cover is an example of a stop and go target. This target is most vulnerable to fire at the beginning and end of its movement to new cover because the target must gain momentum to exit its existing cover and then slow to avoid overrunning the new cover position.

b. Leads. When a shot is fired at a moving target, the target continues to move during the time the bullet is in flight. Therefore, a Marine must aim in front of the target, otherwise, the shot will fall behind the target. This is called taking a lead. Lead is the distance in advance of the target that the rifle sights are placed to accurately engage the target when it is moving.

(1) Amount of Lead Required. Factors that affect the amount of lead are the target's range, speed, and angle of movement.

(a) Range. Lead is determined by the rifle's distance to the target. When a shot is fired at a moving target, the target continues to move during the time the bullet is in flight. This time of flight could allow a target to move out of the bullet's path if the round was fired directly at the target. Time of flight increases as range to the target increases.

(b) Speed. If a man is running, a greater lead is required because the man will move a greater distance while the bullet is in flight.

(c) Angle of Movement. The angle of movement across the line of sight relative to the flight of the bullet determines the type (amount) of lead.

(2) Types of Leads. There are three types of leads.

(a) Full Lead. The target is moving straight across a Marine's line of sight with only one arm and half the body visible. This target requires a full lead because it will move the greatest distance across a Marine's line of sight during the flight of the bullet.

(b) Half Lead. The target is moving obliquely across a Marine's line of sight (at a 45-degree angle). One arm and over half the back or chest are visible. This target requires half of a full lead because it will move half as far as a target moving directly across a Marine's line of sight during the flight of the bullet.

(c) No Lead. The target is moving directly toward or away from a Marine and presents a full view of both arms and the entire back or chest. No lead is required. A Marine engages this target as if it were a stationary target because it is not moving across his line of sight.

(3) Point of Aim Technique. See paragraph 10003 a for a detailed discussion on the point of aim technique. The following guidelines apply if a Marine uses the point of aim technique to establish a lead for a moving target at various ranges and speeds (see figure 10-9). These guidelines do not consider wind or other effects of weather. Body width in these examples is considered to be 12 inches (side view of the target).

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Responses

  • CARA BROWN
    When engaging moving targets what are three types of leads?
    8 years ago

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