5 Tips to Avoid Hitting a Deer

Each year there are over 1.6 million car accidents that are caused by deer. These incidents occur especially in the autumn months.

Deer accident are the most frequent type of claim we see this time of year (although we see deer accidents all year long!). Most accidents are relatively minor (for the car, that is), ranging in the $2,000–$3000 range to repair. But we have seen car damages as much as $10,000, or the car actually be considered a “total” damage.

Listed below are 5 tips to avoid hitting a deer:

  1. Watch for multiple Deer. They rarely travel alone. If a deer crosses in front of you, chances are there are others nearby. Slow down and keep an eye out for more deer darting across the road.
  2. Be ready. Deer are most active at dusk and dawn: periods when your vision is most compromised. To add to their terrible timing, deer are on the move during mating season (October & November) when you’re more likely to travel after the sun sets. Slow down and stay alert, especially after dark.
  3. Watch for key areas of your trip. Some areas of the road may be surrounded by dense trees and hills. Look for the road signs. The yellow diamonds with the deer on it are placed in high-traffic areas for deer.
  4. Stay the course. If you see a deer, brake firmly and calmly, and stay in your lane. Swerving could make you lose control of your vehicle and turn a bad situation much worse. Not to mention, deer are unpredictable, and you could swerve directly into their changed path. A deer accident is considered a “not-at-fault” accident, whereas if you hit a guardrail or a tree (trying to avoid the deer), it is often looked at as an “at-fault” incident.
  5. Hit your Horn! One long blast of the horn will scare deer out of the road. Do not rely on hood whistles or other devices designed to scare off deer — studies have shown them to be largely ineffective at minimizing accidents.

As fall approaches all of us at Wallin Insurance urge you to drive safely!


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