Oct 11 2019

Understanding Liability and Negligence for Hunting Accidents

While cases like car accidents, pedestrian concerns and various traumatic injuries are those most commonly handled by personal injury attorneys, there are also several rarer and more unique types possible. Any situation where an individual has experienced injury or distress due to the negligence of another party could lead to a personal injury claim, and those making such claims will need the best representation on their side.

At the offices of William Rawlings & Associates LLC, we’re here to help. Our personal injury attorney services range from the most common case types to extremely rare ones, with a high-level legal team that can handle even your most unique concerns. One such rarer form of personal injury that’s nonetheless important to understand if you spend time in this activity area: Hunting accidents. Let’s look at some basic statistics on the frequency of these incidents, their causes and how to prevent them – plus what to do if you happen to be involved in such an accident.

liability negligence hunting accidents

Basic Statistics

According to survey data from the US Fish and Wildlife Service taken back in 2016, over 100 million people over the age of 16 go hunting each year in the United States. And while you might think this is a dangerous pursuit in general based on the use of firearms and other lethal weapons for hunting, the rate of accidents is actually very low.

In fact, combining with Canada, fewer than 1,000 people per year are the victims of shooting-related hunting accidents. Under 10 percent of these, or roughly 75 people per year, are killed in these accidents. The most common accident causes are mistaken hunters who think they’ve seen a deer or other prey, but end up shooting a person who is running or performing some other task.

And while these cases are rare, they can still happen – and in many situations, they’ll be caused by negligence that could lead to a personal injury claim.

Negligence Causes

In most cases, hunting injuries or deaths qualify as negligence cases – these require the injury victim to prove that the defendant did not take reasonable care, and was responsible for the accident. Some of the reasons a defendant might be considered negligent include:

  • The hunter did not responsibly handle their firearm.
  • The hunter did not learn how to discharge their weapon safely.
  • The hunter did not take care to ensure the area was cleared of potential human bystanders.

A parent teaching their child to hunt could be held liable for lack of training or supervision if the child is involved in the accident.

Caution and Responsiveness

For both hunters and non-hunters, it’s important to exercise major caution when in the woods or any other area where hunting takes place. Wear bright and reflective clothing, and apply intelligent firearm training and handling if you’re a hunter.

If you happen to be involved in a hunting accident in any way, contact our team of personal injury lawyers for assistance if a negligence or liability claim is being filed.

For more on any of our personal injury lawyer services, speak to the staff at the offices of William Rawlings & Associates LLC today.