Fact #13 - Answer

Isn’t that the most British thing you’ve ever heard? The tea-loving nation even fancy a cuppa on the battlefield. However, they’re not installed to meet the human rights of a British soldier, but to save their life.

The British Army found that 37% of casualties involving tanks in World War II were due to the soldiers stopping to get out and pop the kettle on. There was one occasion 6 days after D-Day, when a convey stopped to have a meeting and a cup of tea. The Germans then launched a counter-attack that destroyed 14 armoured vehicles.

The kettle is known as the Boiling Vessel (or BV) and is actually more of an electric thermos than a kettle. Water, soup, or a basic ready meal is placed inside and heated to boiling point in a matter of minutes. Hey-presto, the crew has boiling water or a hot meal without having to step out of their tank where they are exposed to the dangers of the battlefield. The in-built tea-making facility is a real morale booster and is now found in most modern tanks around the world thanks to the Brits obsession with tea.

Thanks, Great Britain. Now no one will get caught with their pants down and their kettles out.

More tank facts:

  • The British also came up with the name – they called them ‘tanks’ while developing the war machines to make nosey German spies think they were building massive water tanks to provide water to troops. 
  • During the Iraq War, a British Challenger 2 was hit by 14 RPGs and one anti-tank missile. The crew survived, and the tank was back in operation six hours later.
  • A dog-tastrophy – during World War II, the Russians trained dogs to carry bombs attached to their backs and crawl under enemy tanks before detonating. However, the dogs ended up targeting Russian tanks instead of the German tanks, because they were the tanks used when training the dogs. 

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