Hunting and tree stand safety reminders

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East Greenbush, N.Y. (NEWS10) – With the New York State hunting season underway, safety remains a top priority.

“Never hunt out of a built wooden tree stand unless you built it, never hunt out of somebody else’s stand and please, please, please never climb into a tree stand without proper safety harness,” Said General Manager of Flying Arrow Sports, Jim Despart.

Both the DEC, certified instructor and professional archer, Jim Despart say far too often they see incidents occur that are easily avoidable.

“Find a way to keep safe by using a linesman belt system here, which is wrapped around the tree and hooked back onto our belt,” Despart said.

The DEC says over 50,000 people have signed up for the education license course, so more hunters will be in the woods. Despart says whether you’re going up for the first time or 20th, tree stand safety is about never being unhooked.

“The proper way to use this is to put the sleeve between your second and third finger, your middle in your ring finger and as you start to climb up this slides with you,” Despart said. “In the event that you are to slip and fall, it will save your life. If I slide that all the way the top and I get on my stand and I’m still attached, it’s out of my way and I can move around, shoot, anywhere I want to, but I’m always attached to the tree.”

While he says the proper setup of a linesman belt and lifelines might take longer than some might hope, it could save your life.

“It takes a few seconds longer but the guarantees that you’re going to come home to your family and your loved ones,” Despart said.

In the video above, Despart demonstrates how to be proactive and safe about the proper use of tree stands.

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