Firearm Hunting Accidents
Wyoming was vexed with only three firearm hunting accidents in 2001, down from seven last year and the 20-year average of 6.5.

"We're definitely pleased to see the drop in accidents and that there were no fatalities," said Helen McCracken, hunter education coordinator for the Game and Fish Department.

She reports two of the accidents were nearly identical and would not have happened if the hunters would have unloaded their firearms before getting in a vehicle. "There's no reason to carry a loaded firearm in a vehicle," McCracken stresses. "Why would anyone want to? It's illegal to shoot from the vehicle or the road. Since you can't shoot legally until you're out of the vehicle, why have a loaded gun in the vehicle? You're just asking to be a statistic if there's a loaded gun in the vehicle."

In addition to carrying loaded firearms in a vehicle, this year's accidents raised other ethical questions, she said. Alcohol played a role in one of the vehicle accidents, and another accident happened when a pheasant was shot at on the ground.

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