According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are approximately 1.6 million deer-caused vehicle accidents every year, which result in $3.6 billion dollars worth of vehicle damage, 200 fatalities and tens of thousands of injuries.
Could some of these accidents have been avoided and what are some tips to prevent hitting deer and other forms of wildlife?
Continue reading to find out…
Wear your seatbelt
If you’re to have an accident with a deer, your seatbelt is vital to your safety. Drivers often lose control of their vehicle and hit other stationary objects such as trees when trying to avoid deer.
Time of day
Deer are most active at dusk and dawn, and during mating season (October to January). During the winter months, the sun also goes down earlier and you’re most likely to be driving after dark. Watch closely, drive slow and have your headlights on. Use your brights when possible.
Watch out for the baby deer
Deer are pack animals, so if you see one then there are others nearby. Drive cautiously.
Don’t be afraid to honk
Deer are frightened of loud noises and often scatter if you honk at them.
Stay center and don’t swerve
Staying as close to the center lane as possible is a good idea to avoid a deer that may be deciding to dart out onto the road. Don’t swerve to avoid the animal because you may inadvertently hit an oncoming car or another stationary object that could cause even more damage.
Look at road signs
In high deer traffic areas, there will often be signs indicating that you should watch closely for wildlife.
The faster you go, the harder it will be for you to slow down and avoid hitting the animal. Always go the recommended speed limit.
Unfortunately, no matter how cautious you are, an accident with a deer may occur. If this happens, try to remain calm and pull over to the side of the road as soon as it is safe to do so. Stay away from the deer and call the police. You’ll need the police report for insurance purposes.