Reduced Shooting Accidents during Hunting Season
According to the Pennsylvania Game Commission, hunters had one of their safest years on record in 2016 and for only the second time in history there wasn’t a single fatality that occurred during hunting and trapping season in the state. The overall number of shooting incidents was also the second lowest ever recorded, with only 25 hunting-related shootings.
Game Commission officials are hoping this is a trend that continues. 2015 was also a year with low numbers, with only 23 hunting-related shootings reported. At one time, the state had high numbers of hunting mishaps, usually tallying in the hundreds for hunting-related shootings, since records began being kept in 1915.
Hunter Education Plays a Role in Reducing Shootings
Hunter education is one of the main reasons the number of shootings continues to decline. Of the 25 incidents in 2016, nine of them involved hunters with less than a decade of experience. In one case, a shooting involved a child participating in the state’s Mentored Youth Hunting Program, but it should be noted the shooter and his mentor were violating the rules of the program at the time of the incident.
More than 35,000 students received Basic Hunter-Trapper education certification in 2016 in the state. The program includes more than 2200 volunteer experienced hunters who help less experienced hunters learn proper hunting safety.
Most hunting-related shooting incidents occur when a person happens to be in the line of fire, with unintentional discharge accounting for the second most. Continued education efforts and the use of fluorescent orange clothing keeps the rate of people shot because they were mistaken for game at a low rate. Those involved in the program are proud of the good it’s done.
Any Hunter Shooting Incidents are Too Many
Unfortunately, despite education and the reduction in shooting incidents, hunting accidents still occur. And if you or a loved one are one of the unlucky few involved in a hunting accident, the education programs offer little comfort.
We’ve worked with people involved in hunting accidents and helped them receive the compensation they deserve after a shooting incident. Many people do not realize that homeowners’ insurance provides coverage in hunting accidents, which means if you are shot, the shooter’s insurance will provide you with compensation for medical bills and other expenses.
To learn more about hunting incidents or to speak with someone if you were involved in a hunting-related accident, contact Heavens Law at 888.897.5377 for a free consultation.