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North Dakota House shoots down blaze-pink hunting apparel
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North Dakota House shoots down blaze-pink hunting apparel

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Blaze pink (copy)

Sen. Kristin Roers, R-Fargo, dons a blaze pink coat in the hallway before entering the Peace Garden Room to introduce Senate Bill 2143 to members of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Jan. 21 at the state Capitol in Bismarck. 

Safety concerns prompted a North Dakota House vote defeating a bill to allow fluorescent pink as a color for big game hunters' apparel.

The House rejected Senate Bill 2143 in a 14-78 vote Tuesday. The bill brought by Sen. Kristin Roers, R-Fargo, sought to add blaze pink as an option for big game hunting apparel, as well as allow a camouflage pattern of up to 50%. The Senate had passed the bill 43-4.

Big game hunters must wear at least 400 square inches of blaze orange. Roers said nearby states allow blaze pink, and the color might interest more people in hunting.

She introduced the bill after shopping for hunting gear in Fargo two years ago, when she found orange clothing only in unisex sizes and pink apparel in female sizes.

Bill opponents said the blaze pink isn't a standardized safety color and doesn't stand out for red-green colorblind people, and that camouflage patterns impede visibility.

Rep. Todd Porter, R-Mandan, said solid blaze orange is a safety color for a reason.

"That is for complete safety so that no matter where you are with your trunk, which is the vital portion that you really don't want to get shot in, and your head, which is another fairly important piece of equipment, that you don't want to get shot at. We want to make sure that people are visible," Porter said.

"We want everyone to participate in our outdoor activities, but we want it to be done safely," he said.

Reach Jack Dura at 701-223-8482 or jack.dura@bismarcktribune.com.

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