Jake's Outdoors » Blog Archive » Safety on the Rise

Safety on the Rise

February 11th, 2010

Far too often, we only hear the bad things about hunting in the media.  There are always reports of shootings caused by carelessness, and not identifying game properly.  We hear reports of tree stand accidents, reported as “hunting accident” as well as heart attacks from hunters who are out of shape reported under the same pretense.  So, it is refreshing to hear it reported that safety is on the way up.  That’s exactly what happened in Kansas this year!

According to an article in the Kansas City InfoZine, there were fewer hunting accidents this year than ever before.  This is a credit to the hunter safety courses that are taught in the state.  According to the article, there are about 1300 volunteers who provide about 20,000 hours of instruction.  That all adds up to only 12 reported accident for the 2009 hunting season.  Of those, none were fatal.  Kansas has 271,000 hunters, and 3.5 million hunting days among them.  Of the 12 accidents, 8 were attributed to the “careless handling of a firearm” and 4 were accidents that occurred while swinging on game.  It is actually surprising that there were not more of these types of accidents, considering how much bird hunting takes place in the state.

So, what is my point?  We hear all the time how dangerous the sport of hunting is.  We hear about how dangerous guns are, and that there is no rational reason for people to have, or use them.  These statistics show that hunting is a relatively safe sport.  What other sport has 271,000 participants, and has only 12 accidents?  There are more serious accidents than that in high school football, and yet no one (in their right mind) is calling for a complete ban of that sport.  I realize that there are many other arguments for banning hunting, but this argument falls when the facts are examined.

It is great to hear good news in the hunting world.  It is helpful for the hunting community to have good press.  While some may try to make any accident fodder for the antis, rational people will see just how these statistics prove the safety of hunting.  Maybe next year the number will go up a bit, but that doesn’t change the bottom line.  More people are hurt by getting in their cars than by taking up a gun and enjoying the outdoor sport of hunting.  I’ll be taking my chances come next fall.

4 Responses to “Safety on the Rise”

  1. It would appear that Kansas and Michigan had similar years. Michigan had one of its safest years on record, and had no fatalities as well. That isn’t too bad considering the half a million hunters that take to the deer woods every year.

    I wrote a post about Michigan’s successful year too, because I was appalled that I didn’t see the story ran anywhere. Absolutely none of our local news affiliates ran the story, and I could barely find any evidence of the story being covered state-wide.

    At least we’re doing our part to get the story out there, Kris. And hunting is way safer than riding in a car ever thought of being…….or swimming for that matter.

  2. Thanks for pointing out Michigan’s successes too, Arthur! I’m glad there are others out there who are working to show the good side of hunting!

  3. I could not agree more with you guys. I’m from TN and in the Cherokee National Forest there is lots of hunting. I own a whitewater rafting company on the Ocoee River. Often I will take groups mountain biking in the forest during the fall and my groups are not wearing orange, or for that bright colors. Lately I have had to find new bike trails for the fact that I’m just scared of the liability of “if”. I do protect my customers as much as possible, but as someone said earlier, you can only prepare so well. People are hiding and hunting!! If you are in TN and want to go fishing or Ocoee Rafting, just give me a shout!

  4. Good points and reviews on hunter safety. One thing often overlooked in the subject is the fact that most hunters are constantly vigilant in the area of safety. I know that it is constantly on my mind when hunting, especially when I am hunting with others. I preach it, teach it, practice it, and as anyone who hunts with me knows … insist on it! Even one incident that is unsafe is one too many. We want no tragic stories to ruin our joy of hunting and the outdoors.

Add a comment on "Safety on the Rise"