board. It would be a good idea to read some of the
standing orders every few months at morning quarters.
Where practical, standing orders should be posted
so they will be visible to all the team. You should
personally make sure that one copy each of the ship's
organization book, ship's orders (and regulations),
operations department organization book or standing
orders, and the Uniform Code of Military Justice are
always available in the living compartment. You can
secure these books by a chain with the watch, quarter,
and station bill.
As the leading Signalman, do not make the
mistake of having an excellently written organization
standing order and then fail to follow through. Require
compliance with these orders. Point out instances
where failure to follow orders created problems. It is
far better to have one good standing order that
everyone follows than to have ten that are ignored.
Remember that conditions change. You can
develop good standing orders and have them obeyed,
but they will lose their value or effectiveness if they
are not revised as new situations arise. To help you in
preparing adequate standing orders, refer to figure
14-l. Note that it bears the number 2-92. That means
it is the second standing order for the year 1992.
OPERATION ORDERS AND PLANS
LEARNING OBJECTIVES: Identify the
sections of operation orders and plans. Explain
the procedure for preparing operation orders
Operation orders (OPORDs) and plans (OPLANs)
are designated to help the signal bridge personnel in
performing their duties. This section explains
OPORDs and OPLANs.
Before the start of underway periods, all signal
bridge personnel should be familiar with the
communications portion of the OPORD or the letter
of instruction (LOI). The leading Signalman obtains
these orders from the communications/signals officer.
Due to the few copies available, the needed
information may be extracted. At the minimum, a list
showing the task organization, schedule of events, and
call signs should be on the signal bridge. Whenever
possible, the leading Signalman of the ships assigned
to the task organization should arrange a meeting for
a pre-underway brief. During this brief, information
covering visual communications, use of call signs, and
drills should be discussed. You gain an advantage by
discussing these items before sailing.
Changes to OPORDs are issued frequently.
Therefore, the leading Signalman must consult the
OPORD often to make sure the signal team is kept
uptodate on any such changes.
OPORDs are issued to effect the coordinated
immediate or near-future execution of an operation.
They are prepared in a standard approved format, as
stated in NWP 11, Naval Operational Planning.
An OPORD is a basic plan and usually consists of
the heading, body, ending, and (as needed) detailed
procedures (in the form of enclosures called annexes
and appendices). The basic plan is concise, and
contains only details necessary for a clear, overall
picture of the operation. Annexes themselves may be
short or long. They often have appendices and tabs to
elaborate on the many details to be considered in a
large and complicated tactical operation.
The most important portion of the OPORD (for
communications personnel) is the communications
This annex gives information on
communications that is too extensive to be included in
the basic OPORD.
The amount and type of information in a
communications annex depends on the purpose of the
plan or order and on the mission of the command.
An OPLAN is a directive for carrying out an
operation or a series of operations extending over a
large geographic area. The plan usually covers a
considerable period of time and is prepared well in
advance. The plan may include information on the
time it will become effective, or it may merely state
that it will become effective when signaled by
appropriate authority. The operation plan is the
instrument upon which subordinate commanders base
directives to their commands covering specific tasks
assigned. Usually an OPLAN is designed to deal with
some future situation or condition which may or may
not come about.
For more information concerning OPORD and
OPLANs, refer to NWP 11, Naval Operational