This bothers me sometimes. In this period of The Next Generation, offensive weapons (such as phasers) are very fatal. Humans and most other Starfleet personnel are very vulnerable to them. Yet when the Enterprise sends an away team, they are normally just sent on foot with minimal armor or protection, even when the planet may be hostile.

For example, in the episodes Descent (6x26 and 7x01), almost the entire crew were sent to the planet on foot, despite the obvious danger of being attacked by Borgs. Luckily of course, the Borgs only killed off minor characters :)

Is there any explanation of this policy? Even today, armies already make use of helicopters and armored vehicles when doing away missions (even peaceful ones like search and rescue, let alone dangerous ones).

  • @Mario so, the reason is to appear peaceful? How about that encounter with the Borg in Descent, it doesn't make sense to go on foot, does it?
    – user69715
    Feb 26, 2015 at 8:45
  • It hardly makes any sense ever. Also consider they most often just beam down an away team rather than scouting the surrounding area by other means (e.g. shuttles). Keep in mind that the site just says "already has an answer" - that's not necessarily our opinion or to say "here, that's the answer!". We just voted for this to be a duplicate question. That doesn't necessarily mean the other question covers everything here or the other answer covers your question completely. Feel free to add a comment to the other question (or answer) or place a bounty on it (or answer it yourself).
    – Mario
    Feb 26, 2015 at 14:33
  • Weapons are so powerful they can literally disintegrate a person. There probably doesn't exist an armour that save someone, better to go for maximum mobility.
    – komodosp
    Jan 9, 2017 at 11:29