Skip to main content

7 Deer Hunting Accidents to Avoid

7 Deer Hunting Accidents to Avoid

An unfortunate reality of our sport is that sometimes it's the hunters who don't return home at night. Each year, too many of us die in the woods. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, in 2010 over 8,000 hunting related accidents were reported out of over 16,300,000 total hunters. Statistically, the number of accidents related to total hunters isn't too shabby, but one accident is too many. Many of us dedicated deer hunters would love to take our last peaceful breaths while enjoying the great outdoors. That being said, there's no sense in speeding up the process.

TREESTAND ACCIDENTS

A majority of hardcore deer hunters take to the trees each fall hoping to gain an edge on the whitetail's keen senses. The trees are also where most of our accidents happen. Each year, countless people fall from trees resulting in serious injuries. If a fall victim leaves with a few bumps and bruises, they are lucky. Many falls result in broken bones, paralysis, and even severe brain damage. Several people also die each year as a result of their fall. Many of these deaths are the result of obvious causes such as brain damage, and broken spine or neck. Other more obscure deaths are from being impaled on a steel fencepost or tree branch, hung upside down in a poor quality safety harness, or being paralyzed and left for dead. The possibilities for a fatal treestand fall are endless. Be sure to use proper safety equipment when hunting off the ground.

ACCIDENTAL SHOOTINGS

Too many people each fall are killed by other hunter's bullets. Often times, people are mistaken for deer, and shot by a partner or relative. There have even been documented instances where fathers have accidentally shot their sons and vice versa. Poor communication between hunters regarding their locations results in a large portion of the accidental shootings each season. Ricocheting bullets claim their fair share of human causalities as well. Improper loading, unloading, and handling of firearms make up the majority of self-inflicted gunshot wounds. It's important to remember, a gun's safety is a mechanical device, and can fail. Roughly ten percent of all accidental shootings end in death. Be sure of the target, what is behind it, and wear hunter orange!

POOR HEALTH

Deer hunting is hard work! Depending on the terrain, getting to that perfect stand can be much easier said than done. With every possible gizmo and gadget in tow, trudging through the waist high swamp, climbing over the jagged mountain, or shuffling through a frozen cornfield can be vigorous exercise. After the hunt, dragging that huge old buck back out can be even more difficult! Father time catches up with several unhealthy deer hunters each season, and many die of heart attacks. We hunters can't change fate, but we can stay in shape for the grueling season that lies ahead. There are all sorts of training plans online specifically geared toward deer hunters.

CONFRONTATIONS

Any hunter worth their salt will stand up for what is right. Unfortunately, sometimes these situations become confrontations that end tragically. It's not unheard of to learn about a hunter who confronted an armed poacher, or trespasser, and didn't make it home to tell the story. Protecting our natural resources is the hunter's first responsibility, but using common sense needs to be in the foreground.

ATV ACCIDENTS

The ATV has become a staple in many deer camps throughout the country and for good reason. ATV's are fun to drive and can be quite a useful tool for anything from clearing food plots, cutting trails and trees to dragging out that big ole' swamp buck. Each year countless people are fatally injured in ATV accidents and hunters are no exception. A thick layer of insulated camouflage clothing doesn't protect against a crash. As scent eliminating facemask doesn't double as a safe and secure helmet. Drive smart and be safe.

DROWNING

Mature bucks don't get old by being stupid. Many of the wise old warriors use water to their advantage and hide where only a boat will bring a hunter into their backyard. Several hardcore hunters do not leave home without their canoes. As with ATV's, deer hunters are not immune to watercraft accidents and drowning. Scent conscious hunters who do not want to sway from their regiment sometimes choose not to contaminate their clothing with PFD's. Wear a proper fitting PFD whenever using a watercraft.

WHEN ANIMALS ATTACK

Mother Nature claims her fair share of deer hunters each season as well. It's always possible for a hunter to be attacked by a bear or cougar, get bitten by a snake, or have a deadly reaction to a bee sting. Some stranger occurrences happen from time to time as well. Last year an Indiana hunter approached a wounded buck before the animal expired. The end result was that the hunter was gored to death.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

How to Control Predators on Deer Hunting Property

How to Control Predators on Deer Hunting Property

Dr. James Kroll and Pat Hogan discuss ways to help control predators on deer hunting property.

Importance of Conducting Soil Tests for Food Plots

Importance of Conducting Soil Tests for Food Plots

Haynes Shelton talks about why it is critical for property owners to conduct a simple soil test before planning and planting food plots for wildlife.

How to Manage Expectations When Planning and Planting Food Plots

How to Manage Expectations When Planning and Planting Food Plots

Haynes Shelton talks about how to deal with problems and issues you will likely encounter when planning and planting food plots for wildlife. It's all about managing expectations.

Deer Dog: Puppy Pitfalls

Deer Dog: Puppy Pitfalls

On this edition of "Deer Dog," Jeremy Moore explores the pitfalls of puppy training.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Fill your quiver with the right ammo this season.The Best Arrows for Deer Hunting Bowhunting

The Best Arrows for Deer Hunting

Tony J. Peterson - June 10, 2019

Fill your quiver with the right ammo this season.

Making an extreme move to another state to chase public-land bucks worked out for Jake Bush.Would You Relocate Just to Hunt Big Deer? Whitetail

Would You Relocate Just to Hunt Big Deer?

Josh Honeycutt

Making an extreme move to another state to chase public-land bucks worked out for Jake Bush.

Whether you cook it around a smoldering campfire or over a charcoal grill, this Braai'ed Deer Heart Recipe is a good one to add to your after-the-hunt rituals.Braai'ed (Grilled) Deer Heart Recipe Venison Recipes

Braai'ed (Grilled) Deer Heart Recipe

Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley

Whether you cook it around a smoldering campfire or over a charcoal grill, this Braai'ed Deer...

So easy to make, this Venison Queso Dip Recipe can be whipped up in as little as 30 minutes.Venison Queso Dip Recipe Venison Recipes

Venison Queso Dip Recipe

Jenny Nguyen-Wheatley

So easy to make, this Venison Queso Dip Recipe can be whipped up in as little as 30 minutes.

See More Trending Articles

More How-To

Gordon Whittington explains why crossbows have become a popular choice for whitetail hunting.On Target: Crossbows and Whitetails How-To

On Target: Crossbows and Whitetails

NAW TV - May 03, 2018

Gordon Whittington explains why crossbows have become a popular choice for whitetail hunting.

If you're looking to get the most out of your short-range deer guns, author Keith Wood says that Aimpoint sights can do just that.Maximizing Short-Range Deer Guns How-To

Maximizing Short-Range Deer Guns

Keith Wood - August 31, 2018

If you're looking to get the most out of your short-range deer guns, author Keith Wood says...

Rangefinding is simply the process of determining distance. But in the deer woods, it also involves knowing what to do with that information.How to Get the Most Out of Rangefinder Data How-To

How to Get the Most Out of Rangefinder Data

Gordon Whittington - September 19, 2018

Rangefinding is simply the process of determining distance. But in the deer woods, it also...

Access is one of the largest impediments most of us face when it comes to deer hunting. Here's how to deal with the deer ground conundrum. Should You Buy Or Lease Hunting Land? How-To

Should You Buy Or Lease Hunting Land?

Tony J. Peterson

Access is one of the largest impediments most of us face when it comes to deer hunting. Here's...

See More How-To

Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE Arrow

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the North American Whitetail App

Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All North American Whitetail subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now