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Basic Information

The DUKW (popularly pronounced "duck") is a six-wheel-drive amphibious truck that was designed by General Motors Corporation during World War II for transporting goods and troops over land and water and for use approaching and crossing beaches in amphibious attacks.

The designation of DUKW is not a military pun - the name comes from the model naming terminology used by GMC; the D indicates a vehicle designed in 1942, the U meant "utility (amphibious)", the K indicated all-wheel drive and the W indicated two powered rear axles. The DUKW is not armored, but has a bilge system that will keep it afloat with a 2 inch hole in the sheet metal hull. They feature a control that lets you inflate the tires fully for road driving, and deflate them partially for travel on sandy beaches.

DUKWs were used during World War II (crossing the English Channel on D-Day, the First Indochina War, and the Korean War. A small number are still used by the Royal Marines. Most DUKWs in use these days serve as tour vehicles for tourist traps such as the Wisconsin Dells or amphibious rescue vehicles by fire departments. There's one in Seattle that's decorated as a Pirate Ship and used in parades and a number are operated by a tour company that offers sightseeing trips along the Thames in London.

Similar Vehicles:


1. Wikipedia (Source of most of the above text.)

Game and Story Use

  • In a historical military campaign, the PC's squad might land at Normandy or Inchon in a DUKW.
    • Equally, war surplus examples could be very useful for expeditions to remote places up to the present day - a lot of fairly dreadful parts of the world are best accessed by river.
  • Of great use After The End or midst a Natural Disaster. A DUKW is sturdy and reliable on-road, off-road, and on the water, but is probably cheaper than an Ekranoplan.
  • A few may end up in the arsenal of Somali Pirates, or other modern-day Pirates or Vikings. PCs are on a three-hour cruise, or lounging on the beach, when the DUKWs hit the shores.
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