LINCOLN, Neb. – Tree stands are a basic tool of many deer hunters, but they can be dangerous if not used properly, according to the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.
Nebraska Hunter Education Coordinator Mike Streeter says most tree stand accidents are caused by carelessness and can be avoided by following these tips:
— Wear a full-body harness and attach yourself to the tree from the time you are on the ground before climbing into the stand, until you are back on the ground after climbing down.
— Use equipment that is in good condition. Follow the instructions provided with your tree stand. Check your equipment regularly.
— Avoid hunting from heights above 15 feet.
— Maintain a short tether between yourself and the tree. Allow only enough slack for you to turn and shoot. The tether should be tight when seated in your stand.
— Use a haul line to raise and lower your equipment. Wait until you are in the stand and safely secured before loading a firearm or drawing an arrow from the quiver.
— Never use a homemade tree stand.