Storage and transportation of small and large ammunition

Date: 12.12.2015 Category: Transportation

Storage and transportation of small and large ammunition


Proper storage and transportation of ammunition is essential in preventing accidents and theft. Ideal storage can also be used to prevent access to unauthorised people, especially those that could use the ammunition for wrong purposes. Due to the difference in the physical condition of facilities threat level, mission as well as mobility requirements; the storage requirements may vary from place to place. Despite the variability in conditions, ammunitions need to be satisfactorily, and safely stored in the theatre. This should be done, taking into account all measures required to minimize risk to people, facilities, material, and stocks.

When ammunitions are in transit, stored in depots or army warehouses, or held for contingencies; the weapons containers don’t have to be fastened to the storage structure. Such containers need to be locked and sealed so as to prevent weapon removal that will leave no visible signs of tampering. The storage facilities and structures in which the ammunitions are stored have to meet the structure and all the other security requirements.

Ammunition storage facility

An ammunition storage facility needs to have some security measures. One is the Intrusion Detection System in case of any unauthorised access. Another is the security patrols monitoring the facility periodically. All these are determined by the vulnerability of the facility and the level of threat. The period intervals should not exceed 8 hours. Besides, security lighting, use of locks and hasps are two other critical requirements of a storage facility.

Packing and unpacking of ammunition

Ammunition being unpacked or packed for transportation or in assembly–line configuration under normal maintenance repair or rebuild facility do not need to be stored in containers; but still, they need to be safe for the people handling them. The storage containers must not be tampered with, and appropriate inspection is necessary. In this case, it should be done by trained military personnel.

Transportation of ammunition

When used for transporting ammunition, the doors of the approved intermodal containers need to be securely closed and sealed. Containers with end openings need to be placed door–to–door under rail shipments while barriers on rail cars have to be used in the protection of side–opening containers and strictly prevent the opening of such vehicles. The ammunition will be put in the rear of containers just behind the non-sensitive items to reduce the possibility of theft.

In case of contingencies or rotational unit movements that make it impractical to use containers armoured vehicles which, are locked and sealed need to be used to ship the ammunition. Double barrier protection should be provided by placing the ammunition in separate, sealed containers that are affixed to the interior of the sealed armoured vehicles, in a manner that they can’t be easily removed.  Ammunition shipments will only be done through military–operated air and ocean terminals that are approved commercial air and ocean terminals.

Disposal of small and large ammunition

Disposal of all excess ammunition is governed by the provisions of the Law, and their demilitarization need to be always accomplished in agreement with the aforementioned regulations.  Any ammunition undergoing demilitarization need to be transported and stored following this regulation until the process of demilitarization is completed.