South Carolina Free Tree Stand Safety Harness for One Student Attending Nov.-Dec. Hunter Education Classes
The S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is partnering with Hunter Safety Systems to give away one free tree stand safety harness in each Hunter Education course in Nov. and Dec. to promote safe hunting. The winner of the free safety harness will be drawn from the students attending these hunter education classes.
Find a Hunter Education class near you.
Each year in South Carolina hunters are seriously injured as a result of falls from tree stands while hunting. These accidents can be prevented through the proper use of a tree stand safety harness. There were 29 hunting accidents in 2010 in South Carolina. Eleven of these were tree stand accidents and one of these was fatal.
Each time a hunter falls from a tree stand to tragic results, his/her family, friends and loved ones are affected as well. Every tree stand hunter owes it to their wives, husbands, children, mothers, fathers, and everyone around them to stay safe and wear some type of tree stand safety harness EVERY time they are in a tree stand.
See a DNR Youtube video on Tree Stand Safety.
DNR offers the following tips for a successful and safe tree stand deer hunt:
- When hunting from a tree stand, ALWAYS use some type of fall restraint device or safety harness.
- Use a safety rope (sometimes called a “life line”) with a prussic knot to secure to your safety harness so that you are always tied in from the ground to the top and back down again.
- Purchase a tree stand from a manufacturer who meets the Treestand Manufacturers Association (TMA) safety standards (Look for the TMA symbol on the box).
- Test your stand prior to the beginning of the hunting season. Attach it to a tree and climb up or down the tree with it before actually taking it to the woods for a hunt. Be aware of any peculiarities the stand may have and adjust accordingly. Remember; WEAR A SAFETY HARNESS WHEN TESTING YOUR STAND!
- Make sure your tree stand is firmly attached to the tree before you walk out on the end of the stand or stand on either side of the platform.
- If you use tree steps to get to and from the stand, be sure each step is securely attached to the tree and all the way in before you begin to climb. NEVER use tree steps without using some type of safety rope.
- Use a rope to raise and lower your unloaded gun or bow and arrows up the stand. NEVER carry your gun, bow or heavy load into or out of the tree stand. Pull them up once you are safely seated in your stand.
- Unload your gun before pulling it up to, or lowering it from, the tree stand.
- If you use a climbing tree stand, make sure your climbing tree stand is angled into the tree when you first attach it to the trunk. Then, as you climb up the tapering trunk, the platform will level out and hold stable against the tree.
- It is also a good idea to have a shooting bar on any stand, particularly if you have a tendency to fall asleep while hunting.
- Never put more than one person in your stand at a time unless a stand is specifically designed by the manufacturer to hold more than one person.
- Never trust a permanent tree stand that was previously built by another person. Inspect all wooden parts, nuts and bolts for stability prior to every deer season.
- Always tell someone where you are hunting, where your tree stand is located and when you plan to return home.