The National Transportation Safety Administration estimates that car/deer collisions cost approximately $1 billion per year. In 2012 alone, 18,895 car/deer collisions were reported in Wisconsin, with the majority occurring in October and November.
According to OCI, coverage for animal-vehicle collisions is usually listed under the section of your auto policy “Coverage for Damage to Your Auto.”
OCI urges drivers to be aware over the next few months, and to follow these suggestions when driving or dealing with a car/deer collision:
- Be attentive in the early morning and evening hours; this is the most active time for deer.
- Pay close attention to deer crossing signs; they are installed in places where there are typically more deer crossings.
- Wear your safety-belt, stay sober, keep your headlights correctly adjusted, and use your high beams where possible.
- If you see a deer near the side of the road, slow down and blow your horn; some suggest also flashing your headlights to scare the deer away.
- If you see a deer in front of you, brake firmly, don’t swerve, stay in your lane and bring your vehicle to a controlled stop. It is better to hit the deer than to swerve and lose control of your vehicle and risk rolling over or hitting a tree or oncoming traffic.
- If you hit a deer, do not leave your vehicle. The injured deer could hurt you. Try to get your car off the road and call the police.
This post was authored by Rebecca Ballweg, an intern at the Hamilton Consulting Group.