As a beginner metal detecting enthusiast, it’s easy to get excited and want to rush out to the nearest school yard, park or beach and start digging holes all over the place.
Every website that I’ve visited has a Metal Detecting Code of Ethics page and this blog is no different. But why is there so much attention given to this subject?
In the city where I live there used to be no ordinances governing metal detecting in the public parks and school yards. That all changed when a few people abused the privilege and didn’t follow the code.
One day a school child tripped in a hole left by a metal detectorist and broke his ankle. That was the end of metal detecting in public areas.
Metal Detecting Without Digging
It took a lot of convincing by local metal detecting clubs for the city to allow metal detecting again in the parks and schools. They had to prove that it was possible to retrieve a target without digging.
That’s how it’s done now, with only a blunt probe like a long screwdriver, to remove the target from the ground.
All metal detectorists in my city have to purchase a permit and prove that they can remove the target without digging. That way if they want to hunt in public areas within the city limits.
They did this to protect innocent people from harm, all because a few people were too lazy to fill in their holes. But just imagine if it had been your child whose ankle was broken or even your own ankle.
I’m sure you can understand why it is so important to follow the Metal Detecting Code of Ethics.
Not only that, but if you go onto private property without permission and start to dig holes, you’re trespassing and destroying someone’s property. Both of those activities are crimes.
I don’t know about you, but I didn’t get into this hobby to be a criminal or to hurt people.
I started metal detecting because I wanted to find some cool, old stuff, get some exercise and meet a few interesting people.
This just amounts to following the Golden Rule and using some common sense. Not too hard to do.