Vehicle recovery (military)

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This refers to the military practice. For the civilian practice, see Vehicle recovery

Vehicle recovery is a type of military operation conducted to extricate both wheeled and track vehicles that have become immobile due to condition of the soil, nature of terrain in general, loss of traction due to an attempt to negotiate an obstacle, having broken down, or from sustaining non-combat or combat damage. Recovery can be performed using manual or assisted methods of recovery, using ground or vehicle-mounted recovery equipment (mostly winches and cranes), with the recovery of heavier vehicles conducted using wheel and track recovery vehicles, including recovery with the use of the Fifth Wheel Towing Device or with Allied Kinetic Energy Recovery Rope (AKERR). Vehicle recovery can be performed by the vehicle itself, or by another like vehicle, and many field expedients for both recovery and repairs have been used by different armed forces since the wide introduction of vehicles into armed forces during the First World War. Special hand and arm signals are used during the vehicle recovery to guide the participants where field of view or line-of-sight are restricted.