CHARLESTON, W.Va. — It’s that time of the year again. Hunting season; a time for hunters to explore the woods to bring back game and glory. However, there are many unseen risks that hunters can put themselves through without knowing.

Here are some safety tips for hunters and their families, courtesy of the West Virginia Poison Center.

Gun maintenance

Gun cleaning products can be dangerous if swallowed. Liquid gun blue products are particularly harmful as they can cause serious burns and life threatening injury. Store all gun related products in locked cabinets up, away, and out of sight of children and pets. When products are out and in use, keep children and pets away to prevent accidental exposure while the user is busy. Adults can avoid injury while using these products by wearing protective gloves and washing their hands after use. Make sure to get rid of used bottles and cleaning rags in a place where children and pets cannot get them. Even a small amount can cause harm.


Swallowing lead bullets could put a person at risk for lead poisoning. Keep all ammunition, guns, and reloading supplies locked up, away, and out of sight when not in use. Wash hands after handling all supplies.

Waterproofing supplies

Waterproofing supplies can cause breathing difficulties if used incorrectly and can be toxic if swallowed. Use waterproofing products in well ventilated areas away from children and pets. Make sure the item is completely dry before storing inside an enclosed space.

Carbon monoxide

Carbon monoxide is an invisible killer. Hunters can be exposed to carbon monoxide if they are using generators, heating products, or cooking devices in enclosed or unventilated spaces, like a tent. To prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, follow product directions for use in well ventilated areas.

Game handling

After killing wild game, properly field dress and cool the meat as soon as possible to decrease the risk of food poisoning. Be sure to cook all game meat thoroughly and do not allow it to sit for prolonged periods without proper storage.

Save the West Virginia Poison Center number—1-800-222-1222.

Call the medical experts at the West Virginia Poison Center 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Do not wait for symptoms to appear.

The West Virginia Poison Center has information readily available on their website for those wanting to know more.