Avoiding Michigan Deer Collisions
It is that time of year again. Deer migration and the mating season runs from October through December and causes a dramatic increase in the movement of the deer population. As a result, more deer collisions occur in this period than at any other time of year. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are about 1.5 million car accidents from deer collisions each year. These accidents kill 200 Americans, and cause more than 10,000 personal injuries, and will result in over $1 billion in vehicle damage.
Seven tips for reducing Michigan deer collisions with your vehicle
- Be especially attentive from sunset to midnight and during the hours shortly before and after sunrise. These are the highest risk times for deer-vehicle collisions.
- If a collision seems inevitable, brake firmly when you notice a deer in your path, but stay in your lane. Many crashes occur when drivers swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or lose control of their cars.
- Be aware of deer crossing signs that are in active deer crossing areas.
- Use high beam headlamps as much as possible at night to illuminate the areas from which deer will enter roadways.
- Keep in mind that deer travel in herds – there is a strong possibility others are nearby.
- Do not rely on car-mounted deer whistles. Blow your horn with one long blast to frighten the deer away.
- If your vehicle strikes a deer, do not touch the animal. A wounded deer can hurt you or further injure itself if you can, move your car to a safe area.
In 2016, 189 deaths were the result of animal collisions, deer collisions were the animals most often struck in these accidents, according to the Insurance Information Institute and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Most of these accidents occur between July-September when deer are most active.
Filing Michigan Deer Collisions claims with your insurance company.
Damage caused by an accident with deer or other animals is covered under your comprehensive coverage of an automobile insurance policy. Average claims from Michigan deer accidents per claim for 2015-2016 was $3,995.08.
If you are involved in a Michigan deer collision, view our post on What to do after an accident to follow these steps on what you should do after an accident.