Teen shot while spotlighting

Police are reiterating their firearm safety messages after a 17-year-old was shot and injured by a hunting mate on a Southland farm in the early yesterday morning.

The teen and his companions were spotlighting for deer with a vehicle on a property near Orepuki when he was shot, Detective Dougall Henderson said.

He was taken to Southland Hospital and was in a stable condition following surgery.

The members of the hunting group were helping police with inquiries.

Mr Henderson said the shooting served as a timely reminder for hunters to follow the seven basic rules of firearm safety.

* Treat every firearm as loaded

* Always point firearms in a safe direction

* Load a firearm only when ready to fire

* Identify your target beyond all doubt

* Check your firing zone

* Store firearms and ammunition safely

* Avoid alcohol or drugs when handling firearms.

Three hunters have died in accidents in the past year, with 12 deaths in the past decade.


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