State's Deer Season Tally for Hunters: 2 Killed, 13 Injured
ast Updated: Dec. 2, 2003
Thirteen hunters were injured by firearms and two were
shot to death during the nine-day deer hunt that ended Sunday - the second
safest hunting season in Wisconsin history.
While the numbers change from year to year, the
circumstances remain the same. One-third of the hunting accidents were
self-inflicted, and two-thirds involved someone getting injured or killed on
opening weekend, the two days that see the most hunters and gunshots. Those
figures remain fairly constant year to year, (Tim Lawhern, state Department
of Natural Resources hunter safety education coordinator) said.
"Every case, every one of them, it's an example of
extremely poor gun handling. You're either shooting yourself, or you're
being shot by somebody you know. In most cases, you're being shot by a
member of your own hunting group, and it happens during the deer drive when
people are shooting at moving deer."
Both fatalities this year were hunters killed by another
Gerald Bierman, 67, of Janesville was shot in the pelvis
by a hunting companion as they participated in a deer drive around 8:30 a.m.
Nov. 23 in Grant County. William Mundt, 33, of West Bend died the same day
when he was fatally shot in the abdomen by another hunter in Sheboygan
County after hunting hours had ended.
The injured hunters - 12 males and one female - ranged in
age from 15 to 65.
Among the injuries, five were self-inflicted. A
48-year-old man shot himself in the foot when he slipped while climbing into
his tree stand in Crawford County on Nov. 22. Two hunters - a 45-year-old
man and a 15-year-old girl - were shot in the hand when their firearms fell
from their tree stands and went off in Waupaca and Vilas counties.
A 29-year-old man tripped while walking with his rifle in
Sawyer County with his finger on the trigger and the safety off. He shot
himself in the toe.
And a 59-year-old man was shot in the arm in Waushara
County when he dropped his rifle while trying to pull on a glove.