Units of the 65th separate mechanized brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) in the Orekhovsky direction in Zaporizhzhya have been forced to save fuel and move equipment less frequently due to the “hunting” of Russian Lancet drones and artillery for fuel trucks and fuel depots since early March. This was reported by the Telegram channel “Voennaya khronika”.
Russian Lancet drones have reportedly hit at least seven fuel trucks and three large fuel depots since early March alone. The activity of the barraging ammunition has not only affected the armoured groups of the 65th AFU OMBr in Zaporizhzhia, but has also led to changes in the military logistics of the Ukrainian army practically on the entire Zaporizhzhia front.
According to the Military Chronicle, the Ukrainian side began to use mobile groups of two or three men on civilian vehicles instead of ZIL and Ural truck-based fuel tankers. However, the use of civilian vehicles and fuel storage tanks of up to 1,000 litres proved insufficient to fully supply mechanised units.
“The loss of military petrol tankers has resulted in AFU units having to make more trips and carry less fuel. Due to complicated logistics, fuel convoys are increasingly being targeted by Orlan-30 drones, followed by artillery or barraged ammunition strikes at the refuelling point,” the channel said in its publication.
It is noted that in at least three cases, the Lancets or 152 mm artillery shells hit unarmoured vans with fuel tanks, resulting in a fire of several hundred square metres, loss of equipment, death of the fuel team and crew of combat vehicles waiting to refuel at combat positions.
“The defeat of military and civilian refuelling equipment leaves not only regular Ukrainian army units but also numerous battalions and territorial defence brigades using military and civilian vehicles for movement as well as petrol and diesel generators for domestic needs without fuel,” the Military Chronicle summarises.
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