Monday, February 9, 2015

2014 Hunting Accidents Report

Hunting Accidents 2014The 2014 New York hunting season closed with the second lowest number of hunting related-shooting incidents on record according to the State Department of Environmental Conservation, but almost half of all hunting accidents occurred in Northern New York.

Of the 22 hunting incidents that occurred in 2014, nine occurred in Northern New York. Statewide, eight accidents resulted in self-inflicted injuries, eleven involved members of the same hunting party and three occurred between a victim and shooter who did not know each other. Incidents in Northern New York included:

10/14 – Warren. The victim was struck with several pellets from a round discharged by the shooter who was shooting at waterfowl.

10/17 – Hamilton. While turkey hunting the shooter discharged one round resulting in eleven pellets striking the victim.

10/22 – Herkimer. While reportedly hunting for bear, the shooter discharged one round from his rifle. The bullet stuck his brother in the groin area.

10/25 – Herkimer. Self-inflicted – While small game hunting the victim placed the muzzle of his .22 rifle on his foot while texting. During that process he discharged one round into his right foot resulting in the loss of a toe.

11/22 – Herkimer. The victim was struck with one round in the left leg from a firearm discharged by the shooter.

12/1 – Essex. The victim was struck in the lower abdomen with one round fired by his friend.

12/6 – Clinton. Self-inflicted – While goose hunting the victim discharged one round into his right foot. Several pellets struck his toes.

12/12 – Jefferson. Self-inflicted – The victim had used two loaded shells reversed in his shotgun magazine to act as a plug for migratory bird hunting. After discharging one round at a goose the follower shell exploded causing facial and hand injuries.

12/27 – Herkimer. Self-inflicted – The victim was hunting coyote with two other hunters. While reportedly sitting on a log, the victim’s rifle discharged striking him in the right buttock.

New York’s hunting incident rate (incidents per 100,000 hunters) has fallen by more than 75 percent since the 1960s. The past five-year average is down to 4.3 incidents per 100,000 hunters, compared to 19 per 100,000 in the 1960s.

The primary rules of hunter safety are:

 

  • assume every firearm to be loaded;
  • control the firearm muzzle in a safe direction;
  • keep finger off the trigger until ready to fire;
  • identify your target and what lies beyond; and
  • wear hunter orange.

 

The complete 2014 Hunting Safety Statistics can be found here. For more information about hunting safely, visit DEC’s Sportsman Education Program website.

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10 Responses

  1. Hawthorn says:

    From the report it seems we have a lot of Darwin Award candidates who hunt.

  2. Gene porter says:

    Statistics like this can be highly misleading
    They would be more meaningful if normalized per hunter day in the woods or at least per licensed hunter. Maybe hunting itself declined more than the injury numbers!

    • John Warren says:

      These statistics are based on “incidents per 100,000 hunters”.

      “New York’s hunting incident rate (incidents per 100,000 hunters) has fallen by more than 75 percent since the 1960s. The past five-year average is down to 4.3 incidents per 100,000 hunters, compared to 19 per 100,000 in the 1960s.”

    • Paul says:

      It is fair to note that these are “hunting related shooting incidents” as opposed to “hunting accidents”.

  3. Todd says:

    I would agree that the above incidents were all preventable and caused by one or more major safety violations but it is a very small percentage of hunters who caused these incidents. There were at least nine Darwin Award candidates who hunted last year but I would not say we have lot.

  4. Paul says:

    The good news here is that the sport by any reasonable measure is safe and getting safer.

    Also every incident that we do see is preventable.

  5. dave says:

    According to those statistics, the fatality rate is about 1 per 230,000

    By comparison, downhill skiing, has a fatality rate of around 1 per 1,400,000

  6. Jim Racquet says:

    Darwin awards should also go out to the High peak hikers that we read about on this website.