Posted On September 2, 2016 In Personal Injury
Are you ready for hunting season? Within months, thousands of Texans will be hunting dove, deer, ducks and other critters. Like many activities we enjoy, hunting requires a great deal of preparation to stay safe. Having the right supplies and training beforehand can help avoid injuries or worse. Going hunting in Texas requires a strict adherence to certain regulations. There are also certain activities you should never do while hunting.
Supplies: Make sure you have the right supplies before setting out on your trip. It goes without saying that food and water are essential.
Communications and GPS equipment: Bring a mobile phone and seal it in a waterproof container. If you are not far from civilization, you may have a chance to pick up a signal from a cell tower and call for help should an emergency arise. This is not going to be an option for everyone, and there are devices made for sending text messages via satellite (such as ROM Communications’ Text Anywhere or DeLorme inReach devices). A GPS device is also a must-have. Make sure these devices are fully charged before setting out on your trip. An extra, rechargeable battery pack can be a life-saver.
Survival equipment: If you are venturing far out into the country, bring jackets and rain gear. Tools like knives, ropes, lighters and matches are useful. Wear bright colors to make yourself and others stand out (bright orange is required by law in some cases).
Firearms training: If you are bringing someone who has no experience with firearms, it is important they understand basic safety. Shooting outside of the safe zone-of-fire can be a deadly mistake. People new to hunting should know to never point a weapon at another person, even if it is not loaded. Firearms safety is a must for both new and experienced hunters.
Complete a hunting education course: Hunters born after September 2nd, 1971, are required to take a hunting class. However, hunters who have deferred or not taken this course can be accompanied by someone with a Texas hunting license.
Landowners may have their own rules: If you are hunting on someone else’s property, they may stipulate their own rules in addition to rules set by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and county. Follow these rules.
Bring proper identification and licensing material: Never forget your hunting and driver’s license. If you don’t have a driver’s license, bring a personal identification certificate issued by Texas or another state. Depending on what you are hunting, you will need species-specific endorsements. Some species require a trapping license. Nuisance animals may not require a hunting license.
Texas does have hunting regulations that should always be followed. In addition, there are certain activities that should not be done while hunting.
Hunt out of season: Hunt species during the proper seasons. You can find a listing of the seasons for each species and county by visiting the TPWD website.
Hunt in restricted areas: There are numerous regulations stipulating where you can and cannot hunt, such as wildlife sanctuaries. Do not hunt in restricted areas. You can see a listing of restrictions by visiting the TPWD website.
Use illegal hunting methods: You must use specific weapons for certain species. For example, you cannot go duck hunting with a shotgun that holds more than three rounds of ammunition. Certain times of the year may also require specific weapons for certain species.
Drink alcohol: You should never drink alcohol and then go use firearms or bows, no matter what the activity might be. If you are hunting, wait until after you are finished and ready to set up camp for the night or have returned home.
If you are going hunting this season, remember that preparation is essential. Hunting is a fun activity that requires a great deal of responsibility.
Also remember that landowners have a duty to maintain a safe hunting environment. In some cases, accidents may occur on these lands due to unsafe conditions or rules and hunters may have legal options.
The Texas personal injury attorneys at Mike Love & Associates, LLC, encourage you to have fun this hunting season. Stay safe!