Safety courses popular before hunting season begins - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Safety courses popular before hunting season begins

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -

As the hunting season gets closer, people are learning how to stay safe. Instructors said hunting safety courses are growing in popularity.

13-year-old Shayne Meyers is following a family tradition.

"My brothers always go hunting every winter and I've been sitting at home, I've always wanted to," said Shayne Meyers.

So, he's taking a hunting safety course. His father is helping him learn the basics.

"Accidents happen really quick and it increases their awareness of what can happen out there," said Jed Meyers.

Instructors said 36 people are taking the course. A full class at the Marathon County Courthouse.

"The three courses that we're offering this year are all filled and we have a very long waiting list for the people who are trying to get into these courses," said Lt. Randy Albert, Marathon County Sheriff's Department.

According to the Department of Natural Resources, more people are taking the courses and officers are seeing fewer accidents.

"The last couple of years have been the safest gun seasons for deer on record, with zero to one fatalities," said Ben Herzfeldt, Wisconsin DNR Conservation Warden.

Much of the course focuses on gun safety. But instructors said that's not the only way hunters can get hurt.

"Treestand safety and understand how important it is to be prepared for cold weather conditions," said Lt. Albert.

Students like Shayne still have a few days to go, but they said they're excited for the upcoming season.

The Wisconsin DNR has more information on Hunting Safety Courses:

http://dnr.wi.gov/education/outdoorSkills/safetyEducation.html

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