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WRD News Story


Remember Tree Stand Safety When Hunting

Tree stands are a popular way for Georgia deer hunters to get closer to their game without detection.  However, they also are the leading cause of hunting incidents says the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division (WRD).   Fifty-one percent of hunting incidents over the past ten years are tree stand use related.  

    “Hunters can easily prevent tree stand incidents by taking some simple safety precautions,” says WRD State Hunter Safety Coordinator Capt. James Bell.  “Knowing how to put up, take down and properly climb with a tree stand is imperative to their safety.  We encourage hunters to practice climbing into and out of their stand several times prior to the opening of the hunting season.”

    There are many different types of tree stands, climbing and non-climbing portable stands, portable ladder stands, permanent stands and various other types.  Each of these different types requires the user to be familiar with their variations to ensure safety.  People who use tree stands should thoroughly review the proper way to set up the stand and make sure that all parts are stable and in good working order.  Following are some additional tree stand safety tips:

·    When using a non-climbing portable or ladder stand, be sure to securely fasten the stand to the tree and install ladders or steps according to the manufacturer’s directions.

·    Use a safety belt or harness to secure yourself to the tree – not to the tree stand.  In the event that the tree stand breaks or collapses, the harness will keep you from falling to the ground.  Hunters should have a plan on how to get down from the tree should the tree stand fail and leave them hanging from their harness.  Make sure the harness is attached to the waist, allowing for 10 – 12 inches of slack between the tree and yourself.  A full body harness is recommended over a simple harness or safety line.

·    Use an equipment haul line to pull your gun or bow into or out of the stand.  Make sure that the firearms or bow is unloaded before pulling it up.

·    Be careful not to fall asleep.  Be aware of medications that cause drowsiness and avoid taking them before hunting.

·    Never use alcohol or drugs before or while you hunt as it is against the law.

·    Always tell someone where you will be hunting and what time you expect to return.

    For more information on tree stand or other hunting-related safety, contact the nearest WRD Law Enforcement Office, visit the WRD website at or call (770) 784-3068.





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