A central Newfoundland grandmother who was struck by a hunter's bullet while her family enjoyed a holiday outing in the woods may lose the use of her right arm.

RCMP, meanwhile, are still investigating the case, in which a Lewisporte hunter faces both criminal charges and violations of provincial hunting regulations. Police said the hunter said he thought he was shooting at wildlife.


Outfitter Wayne Holloway says anyone who goes in the woods during hunting season should wear blaze orange. (CBC)

The 68-year-old woman, a resident of nearby Little Burnt Bay, was shot in the shoulder on Friday afternoon while four other family members — including one as young as nine — gathered around a campfire.

The woman's husband, who declined a recorded interview, told CBC News that the family was preparing a "boil-up," or a snack and a cup of tea over the fire. The man said the kettle had not even been put on the fire when they heard a loud bang.

"They didn't know what it was until the woman started screaming, 'I'm shot, I'm shot,' " said CBC News reporter Maggie Gillis, who spoke with the man.

A bullet tore through the woman's right shoulder and exited through her back.

The family took the woman to their truck, about 30 metres away, and called for an ambulance.

"After that, things are a bit of blur for her husband, but he said a difference of three inches and it would have been fatal," Gillis said.

The woman has undergone two surgeries so far.

Meanwhile, an outfitter said the incident underscores the importance of safety in the woods — including those who head in for a simple boil-up.

"The thing is that people who are out there berry-picking, snaring rabbits or whatever, have a responsibility to improve their own visibility," Wayne Holloway said in an interview Monday.

"Blaze orange is the order of the day for everybody afield, it seems to me, during hunting season."

Police said while several charges are pending against the hunter, the incident appears to be an accident.