Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise: Hunting with firearms is safe; in fact, hunting with firearms is one of the safest recreational activities in America.
- 11 times more likely to be injured playing volleyball
- 19 times more likely to be injured snowboarding
- 25 times more likely to be injured cheerleading or bicycle riding
- 34 times more likely to be injured playing soccer or skateboarding
- 105 more times likely to be injured playing tackle football.
With hunting season in full swing across the country, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the trade association for the firearms industry, has compiled data that shows hunting ranks third in safety when compared to 28 other recreational pursuits, ranging from baseball to wrestling. Hunting with firearms has an injury rate of 0.05 percent, which equates to about 1 injury per 2,000 participants, a safety level bettered only by camping (.01 percent) and billiards (.02 percent). For comparison, golf has an injury rate of 0.16 percent (1 injury per 622 participants), while tackle football topped the list of activities with an injury rate of 5.27 percent (1 injury per 19 participants).
The number of hunters who went afield last year is estimated at 16.3 million. Of that total, approximately 8,122 sustained injuries, or 50 per 100,000 participants. The vast majority of hunting accidents–more than 6,600–were tree stand-related.