The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries in correlation with volunteers from other law enforcement agencies held a youth hunter safety class for anyone who wanted to attend at the firehouse in Lively.
Game Officer Amanda Neves put together the class, which was very well organized and enjoyed by all who attended.
Neves has been with the department for several years and described the class as extremely informative.
Students were taught how to handle a firearm safely, what not to do while hunting and little tips that can help keep them safe.
One interesting tip conveyed to the hunters was never carry a turkey you’ve killed over your shoulder, which is the most common way to carry it. The turkey could cover up your blaze orange vest or become a target for someone else who is hunting. The safest way is to place the turkey in an orange trash bag or orange hunting bag while transporting it. Small things like this can help keep the hunter safer in the woods.
Communications Supervisor Mark Bryant from the Westmoreland County Sheriff’s Office is a certified range instructor and was on hand to help with the class. “We try to instill safety and safe hunting practices,” Bryant said. “It’s all about safety.”
Seventeen people of all ages attended the class and were given hands-on instruction on properly handling a firearm.
Bryant has been a volunteer for the last four years and enjoys teaching the class. “I enjoy the interaction with the people,” Bryant said. “You get to meet people from different walks of life. We had people who have never hunted before and we had people there that have been hunting all their life.”
The Hunter Education Safety Course is available online and is required by everyone who wants to obtain a hunting license.
The minimum age to start the class is 11 years of age.
Bryant said most people prefer taking the class with instructors because it’s more hands-on and the students actually get to fire the weapons.
For the full article pick up a copy of this weeks Northern Neck News 8/22/18