3-25. REPORT OF SURVEY
a. In the event none of the procedures that have been discussed above can be
used in relieving individuals of accountability of responsibility, a report of survey must be
used. This is the purpose of a report of survey---to be used when no other credit or
adjustment method is appropriate. The report of survey is the most important credit
instrument in the Army supply system. It insures that appropriate investigation is made
and that each report is reviewed objectively at a suitable level of command.
b. A report of survey (figures 3-19 and 3-20) is an instrument for recording the
circumstances concerning the loss, damage, or destruction of Army property and serves
as or supports a voucher for dropping articles from the property records. It also serves
to resolve all questions of responsibility for the absence or condition of the articles or
fixes pecuniary liability. This report is not a device for punishment. It is used when no
other method is available for obtaining credit for lost, damaged, or destroyed property.
The report of survey is discussed in more detail in the following paragraphs.
3-26. REPORT OF SURVEY PREPARED ON DA FORM 4697
a. Who does the actual preparing of the report of survey document is immaterial;
however, the ultimate responsibility for insuring that the survey is submitted rests with
the accountable property officer. Generally, a report of survey may be initiated by
anyone who has knowledge of the particular loss, damage, or destruction of an item. A
report of survey will be prepared in at least five copies, utilizing DA Form 4697 (Report
b. Promptness is an important factor in the preparation of the report of survey.
The report must be processed immediately in order that an investigation can be made
and witnesses still are available. Five working days is a target for initiation of survey
action or processing with 15 working days as a maximum permissible delay. Where
there is unavoidable delay, a written statement by the responsible individual explaining
extenuating circumstances will be appended to or included in the survey. A detailed
block-by-block analysis of DA Form 4697 can be found in AR 735-5. When the DA
Form 4697 is completed, it will be forwarded to the appointing authority, who is an
officer authorized to appoint a surveying officer to make a detailed investigation of the
circumstances connected with the loss, damage, or destruction of property listed on
reports of survey.