Mandatory Safety Harness in AL WMAs

Hunting on an Alabama Wildlife Management Area (WMA) is easily one of the safest outdoor recreational activities there is. However, each season accidents happen that could easily be avoided. A fall from an elevated shooting position is often the most serious and preventable accident a hunter will face. Current WMA hunting regulations require hunters to use a full-body harness capable of supporting their own body weight; wearing one can save your life.

According to Corky Pugh, Director of the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division, wearing a full-body harness is not only a potential lifesaver it is the law on WMAs. "With the hunting accident rate declining over past decades, the past few hunting seasons have been the safest on record," Pugh said. "Improved hunter awareness coupled with the mandatory full-body harness regulation on State WMAs has made a safe activity even safer."

To help ensure a safe and successful season, hunters are encouraged to follow the simple treestand/elevated shooting platform safety precautions listed below:

- Use a full-body harness the entire time you are off the ground.
- Choose a straight, healthy tree of the right size in which to place the stand.
- Inspect your treestand at the beginning of the season and before each use.
- Make sure your stand is fastened to the tree securely.
- Test your treestand slightly off the ground to make sure it is safe.
- Unload your gun prior to pulling it up with a strong cord or rope.
- Avoid excessive movement that could cause you to lose your balance.
- Clear away obstructive branches before shooting from a stand.

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The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of Alabama's natural resources through five divisions: Marine Police, Marine Resources, State Lands, State Parks, and Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. To learn more about ADCNR, visit .