Lowndes game warden urges safety - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lowndes game warden urges safety

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LOWNDES COUNTY, GA (WALB) -

Game wardens want hunters to be safe when they hit the woods and fields this fall.

On average eight people die in hunting accidents in Georgia each year.

The Lowndes County game warden hopes an annual hunter safety class this weekend will help reduce that number.

It's also a requirement to get a hunting license.

Game warden Keith McDonald knows the dangers of hunting. He says one common error hunters make is mistaking animals for people.

"Mr. Lovett was misidentified as a turkey."

Billy Joe Lovett was hunting back in April in 2010 in Brooks County and another hunter shot him. He lost an eye.

McDonald says most the most common accident is a fall.

"Most of the accidents occur from falling from a tree stand," said McDonald. "About 78 percent of hunting accidents involve falls."

If you're in the water you should be sure to wear a life jacket.

"We've recovered numerous drowning victims and not one of them was wearing a life jacket," said McDonald.

James Eunice who drowned while duck hunting is the most recent hunting accident in Lowndes County. He fell out of a boat January 15th. His body surfaced more than two weeks later.

"If you're in a boat, you need to wear your life jacket," said McDonald. "Just like if you're in a car or truck you wear your seat belt."

DNR says on average there's about 73 hunting accidents each year.

That's just in Georgia. Across the nation there are hundreds of hunting accidents each year. By taking a hunting safety class, you can learn techniques that may save your life or someone else's. Game Warden Keith McDonald is teaching that hunting safety class Friday night at the Lowndes County Sheriff's office. It's a two day class, starting at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at 9 a.m.

The class is also offered online.

 
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