Healy Scanlon Law Firm

Hunting accident results in personal injury

According to conservation officers at the Willow Slough Fish and Wildlife Area near the Chicago metropolitan area, a hunter sustained an eye injury from a single shotgun pellet when his hunting partner discharged his weapon in the victim's direction. The 39-year-old Chicago man obviously didn't bargain on a personal injury accident when he and his 46-year-old hunting partner and friend went on the recent trip to hunt pheasant.

The hunting partner said he did not notice that the other man had moved to a different location in the field until after he fired his gun (too late to prevent an injury). The victim was rushed to Franciscan St. Anthony Health at Crown Point and then transferred to another hospital for eye surgery.

Conservation officers from Indiana's Department of Natural Resources said the incident is under investigation but no charges were expected to be filed.

Like anywhere else, recreation in Illinois and Indiana - whether kayaking, boating, fishing, hunting or sports-related activities - is usually relaxing and enjoyable. But accidents are inevitable and can occur to anyone at any time. Safety outdoors should always be the top priority for one to avoid injuries or death.

Illinois and Indiana hunters, both resident and nonresidents, are required to take safety courses that will instruct them in how to use their weapons properly as well as how to observe other safety precautions and requirements, such as wearing orange safety clothing as they hunt. Hunters also must obey all state rules and regulations during their ventures. Doing so could prevent spinal injuries, brain injuries, death, or the other serious consequences that often accompany gunshot wounds.

If an accident occurs during a recreational activity, a victim may be eligible for compensation from other parties if their negligence contributed to the accident. Compensation may cover hospital costs and other expenses until the victim has fully recovered. Such cases vary by state and situation. A Chicago personal injury attorney can help an injured party determine whether there is negligence in the incident and whether another individual is liable to compensate the victim for his or her damages.

Source: Post-Tribune, "Hunter injured in gunshot by hunting partner," Matt Mikus, Nov. 21, 2012

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