Whittington came up behind and failed to signal that he was there or announce himself, which is proper protocol for hunters. Cheney, an experienced hunter, fired his shotgun without realising that Whittington had approached the group.From the International Hunter Education Association:
The area behind the hunters is off limits – no one turns to shoot behind.From the Pennsylvania Game Commission:
Assume every noise and movement is another hunter. If there is any doubt whatsoever -- don't shoot.From the National Wild Turkey Federation:
The saying, “Once you pull the trigger you can’t take it back,” might be cliché, but it also is very true. It’s vital to positively identify your target before pulling the trigger. “Shooting at sounds, movement or shapes is unethical and very dangerous and could result in someone being shot...."From Americans for Gun Safety:
Positively Identify Your Target Before Shooting. When in Doubt, Don't Take the Shot.