Deer mating season is upon us, and with it, the risks of accidents increase significantly. According to the Illinois DOT, more than 40% of crashes in 2019 during October, November, and December were deer hits, with November having the highest risk. Mount Prospect, IL is no exception, with Cook County ranking number one in deer hits over that same period. In rural areas, more than 90% of all auto accidents involve deer. So what can you do to stay safe on the road?
Preventing a Deer Hit:
1. Timing matters. Deer are most active at dusk and dawn, so be particularly alert around those times.
2. Keep an eye on the sides of the road and look for eyeshine – the reflection of your headlights in their eyes. If you spot one, expect more. Deer are pack animals and rarely alone.
3. Don’t expect deer to only show up in rural areas. They are adaptable and appear in rural, urban, and suburban places.
4. If you do spot a deer, slow down. They likely have friends nearby.
5. Deer make strange choices. They may stop in the center of the road or suddenly double back. Be prepared.
Reducing the Impact of a Deer Hit:
If you cannot avoid a collision, brake, don’t swerve. If you swerve, you increase the risk that you’ll impact another vehicle or lose control of your car, and it also makes it harder for the animal to avoid you.
Honk and slow down. If you cannot slow enough to give deer a chance to escape an impact, try to make it a glancing blow instead of a head-on collision. Deer are pretty sturdy and can do a significant amount of damage. The slower you are going and the less direct the hit, the better.
Check Your Coverages:
If you do run into a deer this autumn, is your collision coverage in place? Is your rental sufficient to keep you driving while you wait for repairs? Is your deductible affordable? If you are unsure, call or stop by Com-Co Insurance Agency Inc today to go over your policy and make sure you are protected.