As I was driving home a few evenings ago I was reminded of how deer are more active in the fall. Rounding the turn on Ziglar Rd right in the middle of the road were at least a half dozen deer. With it being dark so early it made it nearly impossible to see them before it was too late. Luckily, I was traveling slow enough to stop feet before hitting any of them.
It’s reported by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (INDNR) there are more than 14,000 deer-vehicle collisions reported in Indiana each year. If you live in Indiana chances are you may have hit a deer in your driving career or might know people who have. Once I was told by an Insurance Adjuster, “it’s not if you’ll hit one it’s when you will”. It’s hard to argue when I too have had the unfortunate meeting of Bambi’s mom a few years ago. I was close to town on St Rd 2 by the National Guard and the deer ran right into the front side of my vehicle causing thousands of dollars of damage.
While there’s no way to completely prevent a deer-vehicle accident, there’re a few things to understand about deer behavior. Deer movements are not entirely random. According to the INDNR in October the autumn “rut”, or mating season begins which causes deer to be distracted and less cautious than usual when crossing roads. Also, dusk and dawn hours deer are most active while they forage for food. The fact that deer are pack animals makes it probable that if you see one deer you near certainly may encounter others near.
Here’s a few helpful driving tips that might help you avoid being one of the unlucky ones. First thing is to be aware of deer crossing road signs. They were put there for a reason, indicating a higher likelihood of deer crossing the road. Slow down, if you know you’re in an area that’s been indicated with a deer crossing sign speed will affect your stopping distance. When driving at night, use your high beams when able. This will increase your visibility in front of you. If a deer runs in the roadway, resist the urge to swerve to miss it. It’s better to hit the deer than it is to swerve and hit something much worse like another vehicle or possibly flip. Insurance companies consider a deer collision a not at fault accident.
If you would like to learn more about vehicle insurance or ways to help save time and money on your vehicle insurance consider scheduling an Insurance Review with me today.