Monday, November 1, 2010

Car Insurance Tips - How to Avoid Deer-Car Collisions

Photo from, a government site for Putnam, WV. 

Tips to Avoid Deer-Car Collisions
By John Heid

Now that fall has arrived, we enter deer season which means more deer will be seen crossing roads and highways. Drivers need to be aware of their surroundings so that they can avoid deer collisions.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, there are 1.6 million deer-vehicle collisions annually, resulting in 150 occupant deaths, more than 10,000 injuries, and over $3.6 billion in vehicle damage.

“Once the first frost arrives, male deer activity increases and we see more auto and deer collisions,” says Allstate agent Scott Todd. “Drivers need to be extra cautious when driving to make sure that they do not hit deer running across the road. Not only can the deer be harmed, but it is also a dangerous situation for the passengers in the vehicle, not to mention the potential damage to an automobile.”

Allstate Insurance Company offers the following tips for avoiding deer and auto collision from the I.I.I.:
  • Deer are not just found on rural roads near wooded areas, many deer crashes occur on busy highways near cities.
  • Deer are unpredictable, especially when faced with glaring headlights, blowing horns, and fast-moving vehicles. They often dart into traffic.
  • Deer often move in groups. If you see one, there are likely more in the vicinity.
  • Drive with caution when moving through deer-crossing zones, in areas known to have a large deer population, and in areas where roads divide agricultural fields from forestland.
  • Always wear your seat belt and stay awake, alert, and sober.
  • When driving at night, use high beam headlights when there is no oncoming traffic. The high beams will better illuminate the eyes of deer on or near the roadway.
  • 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.
  • Brake firmly when you notice a deer in or near your path, but stay in your lane. Many serious crashes occur when drivers swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or lose control of their cars.
  • Do not rely on devices such as deer whistles, deer fences and reflectors to deter deer. These devices have not proven effective.
For more information on safety topics, see our SC Car Insurance pages on our website, or contact us at (843) 249-6317.

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