Tips for Deer Collision Avoidance
It’s that time of year again – when more collisions occur between vehicles and deer. Interestingly, risk of collisions with deer varies widely between states. Also, certain periods of the year yield more activity and collisions which we are about to enter.
State Farm Insurance has been looking at the incidence of vehicle and deer/elk/moose collisions for the past nine years and their latest study shows the incidence to be the same as 2014 – a chance of one in 169.
In a news release from September 14, 2015, State Farm outlines the risks including the states with the greatest likelihood of deer collisions. The top five states include:
- West Virginia
- South Dakota
West Virginia ranked number one with odds of a crash being one in 44 – much greater than the national average.
In 2013, 191 deaths were the result of collisions with animals, with deer being the animal most often struck, according to the Insurance Information Institute and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The months with the greatest amount of collisions include the months of November, October and December respectively when the odds are double those of other months.
Deer are unpredictable and result in average insurance claim repairs of over $6,000 per incident. Deer/Elk/Moose are most active from 6:00 – 9:00 PM but can be a hazard at any time.
State Farm offers valuable tips to minimize risk of deer/elk/moose collisions including:
- Use extra caution in known deer zones
- Always wear your seatbelt
- At night, when there is no oncoming traffic, use high beams
- Avoid swerving when you see a deer
- Scan the road for deer and other danger signs
- Do not rely on devices such as deer whistles