For many experienced hunters, being in the woods is like being home. Unfortunately, they sometimes decide to forgo safety gear—a choice that has dangerous consequences. In a 2015 review, the researchers at Hunter Safety Lab found that “mistaken for game” hunting accidents are often committed by experienced hunters who were considered safe and competent.
Mistakes Can Happen
According to the review, your brain uses past experiences and memories to “fill in the blanks” in a process known as heuristics. As hunters gain more experience, they become more skilled at completing the puzzle, which gives them an edge over novices for skills like spotting game.
Unfortunately, heuristics also make huntsmen more susceptible to cognitive biases. Known as systematic errors in thinking, cognitive biases are mistakes in reasoning, judgment, and memory. When combined, heuristics and cognitive biases make it easy to quickly and inaccurately assess a situation. This puts you at a greater risk of slipping off a treestand, injuring yourself during the climb, or shooting a fellow hunter after seeing prey that isn’t there.
Why Use Safety Gear?
Judgment mistakes can be avoided by following the basic rules of safety, including having the proper safety gear. Make sure to wear brightly colored clothing, which makes you easier to spot by fellow hunters amidst a forest of greens and browns. While many huntsmen forgo this advice because they believe it doesn’t camouflage well, it enhances safety while outdoors.
Treestands are an important part of anyone’s hunting supplies. These structures will keep you elevated and out of eye-level, which is ideal both for safety and spotting prey before it sees you. When using this hunting gear, safety equipment like a climbing stick is also critical. This provides balance and stability, making it easier to climb into treestands. Make sure to look for a brand with straps that boasts a heavy load capacity.
Whether you’re an experienced or novice hunter, safety is important. This is why Hurricane Safety Systems, LLC in Traverse City, MI, has dedicated themselves to providing secure entry and exit from hunting platforms. They offer reliable safety gear such as 16-foot Gravity Forward Climbing Sticks™ and PowerStraps™ to simplify tying down hunting equipment. Learn more about their safety systems by visiting their website or by calling (231) 935-4049.