Safeties on People Using Common Sense

Have you ever wondered why some people jump out of perfectly good air planes, or why others drive dragsters over 200 miles an hour and not worry?  The answer is simple: they have on safety equipment that protects them when something goes wrong.

There are guys who will spend well over two thousand dollars for a bow, a set of arrows, countless accessories, a tree stand and scent proof clothing, but yet are too cheap to buy a quality safety harness.  I just do not understand this thought process.  For many, this line of thinking results in severe injury or death. 

Every year, we read in the papers or in magazines about guys and gals who fall out of tree stands and are severely hurt or die, and for what?  Because they are too cheap or too lazy to wear a full body safety arrest system.  For me, the best $200.00 I could spend on hunting equipment is on a harness and a life line climbing line.  One of the best companies out there is Hunter Safety System.  All they do is make harnesses and harness accessories.  This company is dedicated to bringing you back home at the end of the hunt.  It is so simple: buckle the harness on, (which takes ten seconds) and then clip the harness in the safety carabineer before you step on the ladder to climb up the tree.  It is just that simple.  Now I have no worries.  If I slip off the ladder, not a problem, I will hang comfortably in the air until I can reach the ladder and regain my balance, or wait until one of hunting party comes along to help me down. 

There are just too many things that can go wrong when you are 20 feet in the air.  One of the most common ways in which people fall out of tree stands is that they simply fall asleep.  The early hours of the hunt, the cool breeze, the gentle rocking of the tree, put many hunters right to sleep.  Many do not ever wake up again, and those that do often wake up in intensive care and suffer from severe paralysis the rest of their lives.  The second most common area where hunters fall is while they are climbing up and down their ladders or climbing sticks.  Others fall out of their tree stand as they are preparing to shoot.  They lose their balance or step where there is nothing but air. 

These are senseless injuries that could all have been prevented by simply wearing a full body fall arrest system.  Would you get in your car and not wear a seat belt?  If so, you are gambling with your life.

If you are going to hunt by yourself, let someone know where you are going, and when they should expect you back.  Also, before you ever head into the woods, remember you have to purchase more than a bow and a license.  There are pieces of safety equipment out there specifically designed to get you into the woods and back again safely.  Please considerer all the cost associated with hunting, not just the cost of basic equipment. 

With all of today’s modern techno gadgets for hunters, there are simply no excuses for dying in the field.  Years ago we would hear tales of hunters who would die in the mountains because they would get lost and become so disoriented that they could not find their way out of the forest. 

Now, thanks to hand-held global positioning systems (many that cost less than a set of good arrows), there are fewer and fewer of these types of stories being told in deer camp.  Online, you can find free mapping programs that can give you a complete lay of the land before you ever leave your house.  There is even a spot beacon locator that allows you to communicate to friends and family that you are ok.  Heck, if you want to, you can even purchase a personal EPIRB to take with you into the woods.  There is just no excuse for getting lost. 

As a point of emphasis, I am including the Tree Stand Safety Guidelines from the Tree Stand Manufactures Association, despite some redundancy:

ALWAYS wear a Fall-Arrest System (FAS)/Full Body Harness meeting TMA Standards even during ascent and descent.  Be aware that single strap belts and chest harnesses are no longer allowed Fall-Arrest devices and should not be used.  Failure to use a FAS could result in serious injury or death.

ALWAYS read and understand the manufacturer’s WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS before using the tree stand each season.  Practice with the tree stand at ground level prior to using at elevated positions.  Maintain the WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS for later review as needed, for instructions on usage to anyone borrowing your stand, or to pass on when selling the tree stand.  Use all safety devices provided with your tree stand.

NEVER exceed the weight limit specified by the manufacturer.  If you have any questions after reviewing the WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS, please contact the manufacturer.

ALWAYS inspect the tree stand and the Fall-Arrest System for signs of wear or damage before each use.  Contact the manufacturer for replacement parts.  Destroy all products that cannot be repaired by the manufacturer and/or exceed recommended expiration date, or if the manufacturer no longer exists.  The FAS should be discarded and replaced after a fall has occurred.

ALWAYS practice in your Full Body Harness in the presence of a responsible adult prior to using it in an elevated hunting environment, learning what it feels like to hang suspended in it at ground level and how to properly use your suspension relief device.

ALWAYS attach your Full Body Harness in the manner and method described by the manufacturer.  Failure to do so may result in suspension without the ability to recover into your tree stand.  Be aware of the hazards associated with Full Body Harnesses and the fact that prolonged suspension in a harness may be fatal.  Have in place a plan for rescue, including the use of cell phones or signal devices that may be easily reached and used while suspended.  If rescue personnel cannot be notified, you must have a plan for recover/escape.  If you have to hang suspended for a period of time before help arrives, exercise your legs by pushing against the tree or doing any other form of continuous motion or use your suspension relief device.  Failure to recover in a timely manner could result in serious injury or death.  If you do not have the ability to recover/escape, hunt from the ground.

ALWAYS hunt with a plan, and if possible, with a buddy.  Before you leave home, let others know your exact hunting location, when you plan to return and who is with you.

ALWAYS carry emergency signal devices such as a cell phone, walkie-talkie, whistle, signal flare, PLD (personal locator device) and flashlight on your person at all times, and within reach, even while you are suspended in your FAS.  Watch for changing weather conditions.  In the event of an accident, remain calm and seek help immediately.

ALWAYS select the proper tree for use with your tree stand.  Select a live straight tree that fits within the size limits recommended in your tree stand’s instructions.  Do not climb or place a tree stand against a leaning tree.  Never leave a tree stand installed for more than two weeks since damage could result from changing weather conditions and/or from other factors not obvious with a visual inspection.

ALWAYS use a haul line to pull up your gear and unloaded firearm or bow to your tree stand once you have reached your desired hunting height.  Never climb with anything in your hands or on your back.  Prior to descending, lower your equipment on the opposite side of the tree.

ALWAYS know your physical limitations.  Don’t take chances.  Do not climb when using drugs, alcohol, or if you’re sick or unrested.  If you start thinking about how high you are, don’t go any higher.

NEVER use homemade, or permanently elevated stands, nor make modifications to a purchased tree stand without the manufacturer’s written permission.  Only purchase and use tree stands, and Fall-Arrest Systems meeting or exceeding TMA standards.

NEVER hurry!!  While climbing with a tree stand, make slow, even movements of no more than ten to twelve inches at a time.  Make sure you have proper contact with the tree and/or tree stand every time you move.  On ladder-type tree stands, maintain three points of contact with each step.

Copyright © 2009 by TMA

Using Common Sense When Off the Ground

Have you ever wondered why some people jump out of perfectly good air planes, or why others drive dragsters over 200 miles an hour and not worry?  The answer is simple: they have on safety equipment that protects them when something goes wrong. 

There are guys who will spend well over two thousand dollars for a bow, a set of arrows, countless accessories, a tree stand and scent proof clothing, but yet are too cheap to buy a quality safety harness.  I just do not understand this thought process.  For many, this line of thinking results in severe injury or death.  

Every year, we read in the papers or in magazines about guys and gals who fall out of tree stands and are severely hurt or die, and for what?  Because they are too cheap or too lazy to wear a full body safety arrest system.  For me, the best $200.00 I could spend on hunting equipment is on a harness and a life line climbing line.  One of the best companies out there is Hunter Safety System.  All they do is make harnesses and harness accessories.  This company is dedicated to bringing you back home at the end of the hunt.  It is so simple: buckle the harness on, (which takes ten seconds) and then clip the harness in the safety carabineer before you step on the ladder to climb up the tree.  It is just that simple.  Now I have no worries.  If I slip off the ladder, not a problem, I will hang comfortably in the air until I can reach the ladder and regain my balance, or wait until one of hunting party comes along to help me down.  

There are just too many things that can go wrong when you are 20 feet in the air.  One of the most common ways in which people fall out of tree stands is that they simply fall asleep.  The early hours of the hunt, the cool breeze, the gentle rocking of the tree, put many hunters right to sleep. Many do not ever wake up again, and those that do often wake up in intensive care and suffer from severe paralysis the rest of their lives. The second most common area where hunters fall is while they are climbing up and down their ladders or climbing sticks.  Others fall out of their tree stand as they are preparing to shoot. They lose their balance or step where there is nothing but air.  

These are senseless injuries that could all have been prevented by simply wearing a full body fall arrest system.  Would you get in your car and not wear a seat belt? If so, you are gambling with your life. 

If you are going to hunt by yourself, let someone know where you are going, and when they should expect you back. Also, before you ever head into the woods, remember you have to purchase more than a bow and a license.  There are pieces of safety equipment out there specifically designed to get you into the woods and back again safely.  Please considerer all the cost associated with hunting, not just the cost of basic equipment.  

With all of today’s modern techno gadgets for hunters, there are simply no excuses for dying in the field.  Years ago we would hear tales of hunters who would die in the mountains because they would get lost and become so disoriented that they could not find their way out of the forest.  

Now, thanks to hand-held global positioning systems (many that cost less than a set of good arrows), there are fewer and fewer of these types of stories being told in deer camp.  Online, you can find free mapping programs that can give you a complete lay of the land before you ever leave your house.  There is even a spot beacon locator that allows you to communicate to friends and family that you are ok.  Heck, if you want to, you can even purchase a personal EPIRB to take with you into the woods.  There is just no excuse for getting lost.  

 

As a point of emphasis, I am including the Tree Stand Safety Guidelines from the Tree Stand Manufactures Association, despite some redundancy: 

 

ALWAYS wear a Fall-Arrest System (FAS)/Full Body Harness meeting TMA Standards even during ascent and descent. Be aware that single strap belts and chest harnesses are no longer allowed Fall-Arrest devices and should not be used. Failure to use a FAS could result in serious injury or death.

 

ALWAYS read and understand the manufacturer’s WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS before using the treestand each season. Practice with the tree stand at ground level prior to using at elevated positions. Maintain the WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS for later review as needed, for instructions on usage to anyone borrowing your stand, or to pass on when selling the tree stand. Use all safety devices provided with your tree stand.

 

NEVER exceed the weight limit specified by the manufacturer. If you have any questions after reviewing the WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS, please contact the manufacturer. 

 

ALWAYS inspect the tree stand and the Fall-Arrest System for signs of wear or damage before each use. Contact the manufacturer for replacement parts. Destroy all products that cannot be repaired by the manufacturer and/or exceed recommended expiration date, or if the manufacturer no longer exists. The FAS should be discarded and replaced after a fall has occurred.

 

ALWAYS practice in your Full Body Harness in the presence of a responsible adult prior to using it in an elevated hunting environment, learning what it feels like to hang suspended in it at ground level and how to properly use your suspension relief device.

 

ALWAYS attach your Full Body Harness in the manner and method described by the manufacturer. Failure to do so may result in suspension without the ability to recover into your tree stand. Be aware of the hazards associated with Full Body Harnesses and the fact that prolonged suspension in a harness may be fatal. Have in place a plan for rescue, including the use of cell phones or signal devices that may be easily reached and used while suspended. If rescue personnel cannot be notified, you must have a plan for recover/escape. If you have to hang suspended for a period of time before help arrives, exercise your legs by pushing against the tree or doing any other form of continuous motion or use your suspension relief device. Failure to recover in a timely manner could result in serious injury or death. If you do not have the ability to recover/escape, hunt from the ground.

 

ALWAYS hunt with a plan, and if possible, with a buddy. Before you leave home, let others know your exact hunting location, when you plan to return and who is with you.

 

ALWAYS carry emergency signal devices such as a cell phone, walkie-talkie, whistle, signal flare, PLD (personal locator device) and flashlight on your person at all times,and within reach, even while you are suspended in your FAS. Watch for changing weather conditions. In the event of an accident, remain calm and seek help immediately.

 

ALWAYS select the proper tree for use with your treestand. Select a live straight tree that fits within the size limits recommended in your tree stand’s instructions. Do not climb or place a tree stand against a leaning tree. Never leave a tree stand installed for more than two weeks since damage could result from changing weather conditions and/or from other factors not obvious with a visual inspection.

 

ALWAYS use a haul line to pull up your gear and unloaded firearm or bow to your tree stand once you have reached your desired hunting height. Never climb with anything in your hands or on your back. Prior to descending, lower your equipment on the opposite side of the tree.

 

ALWAYS know your physical limitations. Don’t take chances. Do not climb when using drugs, alcohol, or if you’re sick or unrested. If you start thinking about how high you are, don’t go any higher.

 

NEVER use homemade, or permanently elevated stands,nor make modifications to a purchased tree stand without the manufacturer’s written permission. Only purchase and use tree stands, and Fall-Arrest Systems meeting or exceeding TMA standards. 

NEVER hurry!! While climbing with a tree stand, make slow, even movements of no more than ten to twelve inches at a time. Make sure you have proper contact with the tree and/or tree stand every time you move. On ladder-type tree stands, maintain three points of contact with each step.

Copyright © 2009 by TMA

 

Hunter Safety System Introduces a New Harness Specifically Designed for Crossbow Hunters

DANVILLE, Ala.  (June 6, 2016) – As crossbow hunting continues to gain popularity across the country, today Hunter Safety System announced the introduction of a new harness specifically designed to address the unique set of challenges that are associated with safely hunting with a crossbow from a treestand. The new HSS Crossbow Harness answers all those challenges in a stylish, comfortable and affordable harness. HSS_Crossbow_Harness
 
Unlike traditional bows, crossbows have issues related to cocking the crossbow while hunting from an elevated position. When the crossbow is cocked, the treestand safety harnesses’ tether strap tends to fall in front of the hunter, which not only is frustrating but also can tangle with the crossbow and knock off or damage the scope. To eliminate this problem, HSS has added a Tether Stow Strap to the new Crossbow Harness that will safely secure the tether when cocking the bow. 
 
Another feature of this new harness is the deep zippered pocket specifically designed to accommodate the cocking rope which if stowed in a backpack or regular harness pocket can easily get tangled with other gear or fall out of the stand. HSS has also equipped the new Crossbow Harness with a Range Finder Rip Cord that keeps the rangefinder handy yet out of the way and always attached so an accidental drop is never a concern.
 
Designed on the popular HSS Hybrid Flex chassis, the new HSS Crossbow Harness features the same 1.25-inch upper-body webbing, shock absorbing tether and waist buckle. The individual, padded hexagon shoulder straps on the HSS Crossbow Harness provide comfort and maximum flexibility and the ample pockets—including a secure mesh pocket designed for a cell phone—make it easy to store all of the necessary crossbow and other hunting gear. Weighing only 2.5 lbs., the new HSS Crossbow Harness meets current industry standards recognized by the Treestand Manufacturers Association.
 
Featuring the popular Realtree® Xtra™ the new HSS Crossbow Harness includes a lineman’s climbing strap, an adjustable tree strap, a suspension-relief/deer drag strap and instructions. It will be available this summer at major sporting goods retailers nationwide and conveniently online at www.hssvest.com for a suggested retail price of $129.99.
 
Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Danville, Ala., Hunter Safety System is a leading designer and manufacturer of innovative deer hunting gear and hunting equipment for the serious hunter. For additional information, write to: The Hunter Safety System, 8237 Danville Road, Danville, AL 35619; call toll-free 877-296-3528; or visit www.hssvest.com.
 

Hunter Safety System Introduces the HSS Hanger Utility Harness

DANVILLE, Ala.  (April 26, 2016) – Hanging stands just got a whole lot easier. Avid hunters know that a successful hunting season starts well before the opening day. That is why the engineers at Hunter Safety System have designed the first and only treestand harness for use during the pre-season. The new HSS Hanger harness is a utility safety harness that features deep utility pockets to carry tools, steps, snips, saws, HSS-LIFELINEs and other gear needed for the pre-season preparation. The HSS Hanger allows you to safely put in many days of hard work in the field without worrying about adding sweat, body odors, gasoline, oil or bug spray to your hunting harness.
 
HSS-HANGERConstructed of extremely durable nylon webbing and fabric, the new HSS Hanger not only handles the rigors of hanging stands and clearing lanes, but also allows work to be done in substantially less time. With its ample storage space, the HSS Hanger virtually eliminates the need for multiple trips up and down the tree or to the truck when cutting shooting lanes, moving cameras or doing other necessary preparations. 
 
HSS Hanger’s deep, rigid utility pockets are designed to securely hold all the gear at the same time. The HSS Hanger’s internal harness is identical to the company’s current hunting harnesses, so comfort is a given, and it features well-padded shoulders to evenly distribute the load and reduce fatigue. Additionally, the uniquely designed sliding pockets can effortlessly be moved to the side of the harness for easy access to gear and then moved back out of the way when working. The harness is easily recognizable by its gold piping and accents against an all-black high-strength webbing harness and heavy pockets.
 
The HSS Hanger Harness is not for hunting, so stinking it up a bit is not a concern. The HSS Hanger comes standard with a pro-grade rope style Lineman’s Climbing belt, adjustable tree strap, suspension strap, instructional DVD and safe use instructions. Work less; get more done with the Hanger Harness. It is available at retailers nationwide for a suggested retail price of $99.99.
 
Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Danville, Ala., Hunter Safety System is a leading designer and manufacturer of innovative deer hunting gear and hunting equipment for the serious hunter. For additional information, write to: Hunter Safety System, 8237 Danville Road, Danville, AL 35619; call toll-free 877-296-3528; or visit www.hssvest.com.
 

Hunter Safety System Celebrates 15 Years of Saving Lives

DANVILLE, Ala.  (Jan. 14, 2016) — Hunter Safety System has reached a milestone this year, celebrating 15 years in business. The company continues to remain true to the original dream of its founders John Wydner, Jerry Wydner and Jim Barta of making every treestand hunting experience as safe as possible. Since 2001, the company has grown from the three owners working part-time to launch one safety harness to a company with 18 employees and more than twenty different product offerings.
 
“It gives me great pride in joining HSS employees, customers and business partners in celebrating the company’s 15th anniversary,” said Jerry Wydner, president and owner. “We have come a long way since our first harness, yet we continue our focus on ensuring the safety of hunters.
 
“We will continue to develop and offer products that will keep our hunters coming home to their family and friends after each hunt. That is what we do,” Wydner said.
 
When Hunter Safety System launched its company 15 years ago, it opened a new category in the hunting industry. Today, Hunter Safety System is a household name among those who hunt. Since its inception, the company has set the standard for innovative, state-of-the-art safety harnesses. This tradition continues today.
 
Headquartered in Danville, Ala., Hunter Safety System is a leading designer and manufacturer of innovative treestand hunting safety equipment and deer hunting gear for the serious hunter. For additional information, write to: The Hunter Safety System, 8237 Danville Road, Danville, AL 35619; call toll-free 877-296-3528; or visit www.huntersafetysystem.com.

Hunter Safety System now Offers a LIFELINE that Accommodated Stands up to 44 Feet High

DANVILLE, Ala. (Sept. 18, 2015) – In response to customer demand, Hunter Safety System now offers a LIFELINE that accommodated stands up to 44 feet high. The new LIFELINE 42 is ideal for hunters that are filming their hunt and need to have a cameraman in a higher stand and for those hunters that like to hunt from higher locations.

More and more hunters are discovering that using the LIFELINE not only keeps them safer, it truly makes treestand hunting more convenient and actually gets in position to hunt more quickly.

LifeLine2015_Studio“We have found that if a hunter uses the LIFELINE just once, they’ll want one on every treestand,” said Jerry Wydner, Co-Founder of HSS. “It just makes a night-and-day difference.”

The new LIFELINE 42 features the company’s latest technology of the woven-in reflective strip that makes locating a treestand in the dark as simple and quick as pressing a flashlight switch. It also features the Recon Carabiner in a new sound-dampening Cow Bell Cover for absolute stealth while climbing and hunting.

In the past, hunters that chose to be in stands above 30 feet would have to climb 12 feet or more before hooking up to their LIFELINE. This is extremely dangerous because statistics prove that 86-percent of all treestand accidents occur while climbing in and out of the treestand. With the new LIFELINE 42 this is no longer an issue.

The LIFELINE 42 completely protects the treestand hunter from the risk of life threatening injury when getting into and out of the stand and is hands down the simplest, safest way to stay attached to the tree from the ground to the stand, during the hunt and back again. The LIFELINE accommodates stands up to 44 feet high, and the Recon Carabineer is rated at 3,500 pounds.

The LIFELINE 42 will be available only online at www.huntersafetysystem.com. The suggested retail price will be $49.99 for a single attachment point and $59.99 for the tandem.

Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Danville, Ala., Hunter Safety System is a leading designer and manufacturer of innovative deer hunting gear and hunting equipment for the serious hunter. For additional information, write to: The Hunter Safety System, 8237 Danville Road, Danville, AL 35619; call toll-free 877-296-3528; or visit www.huntersafetysystem.com.