Even the most meticulous drivers can end up hitting a deer!
As drivers, it is safe to assume that most of us drive with care to avoid the risk of hitting a deer- unfortunately the probability of auto-deer collisions raises when Fall rolls around. Roughly from October to December deer are in their mating season, which is a huge cause for their tendency to run across roads and cause accidents. Understanding how deer may act in these situations can help you avoid a collision!
A few things facts to help avoid a collision with deer are:
- Deer tend to become active before and after sunrise and again around sunset, late into the night. You should drive with care during these times!
- As always, be aware of your surroundings! Not only should you keep an eye out for deer on shoulders and roads, but also notice road signs that might indicate where they travel frequently.
- Drive with your headlights on, even early in the morning so you can hopefully spot them easily.
- If you see that you are approaching a deer, you can hit your breaks, remaining in your lane, and even honk your horn in an attempt to scare the deer off.
But sometimes these driving tactics may still fail you and you might end up in an accident due to a deer. If you find yourself in a collision, here are the steps you should take to not only ensure your safety, but also the safety of others!
- If your vehicle is still operable, pull off to safety. Make sure you are out of the road, on the shoulder or roadside as far as possible.
- Call the police. They not only need to make a report but can also help you estimate the amount of damage done! Many times, the deer can be blocking traffic or could have caused injury and you may need assistance.
- A very important rule to remember when in this position is to NEVER approach the deer! No matter the condition of a wild animal, when frightened they may hurt you.
- If possible, document the damage. If you can safely take pictures of the damage to your car, the deer, and any of your surroundings that were affected you should do so.
- The last step to do when you find yourself in this position is to make sure that your car is in the right condition to drive! If you see things out of the ordinary like a leak, hanging parts, tire puncture or anything that is abnormal, call someone for help!
Never think that you are unsusceptible to these collisions; look at some Missouri Deer stats that might change your mind.
- Within one year the U.S. saw 1.33 million total deer collisions.
- The average cost of each crash was $4,300.
- Missouri has every 1 in 110 drivers experiencing a collision.
- Missouri has the 12thhighest rate with over 38,000 collisions.
Fall is a beautiful time of year and there are many autumn colors and sights to see – but don’t let these fall decorations distract you from safe driving! Always keep an eye out for deer, especially at dusk and dawn. No matter how safe you drive, you can’t always avoid an auto-deer collision.
If you find yourself in this position, give Tad K Morlan a call so he can help you KNOW WHAT TO DO!