The Fall 2019 Seasonal Smarts Digest encourages drivers to keep an eye out for unexpected wildlife when they hit the roads this fall. It's also helpful for drivers to understand the type of coverage needed in the event of an accident with an animal. Comprehensive insurance covers damage to your car not caused by a collision. This may include damage involving animals of all types and sizes.
"If you find yourself facing a potential accident with a deer or other animal, do your best to stay the course," said
This may surprise the 66% of surveyed drivers who believe that swerving to avoid a deer is the best way to minimize damages2. But swerving at high speeds increases the potential of losing control, causing a rollover or colliding with another vehicle3. In most situations, it's safer for drivers to maintain control of their vehicle and proceed with as much caution as possible.
Drivers can't prevent animals from crossing the road, but they can exercise caution to stay safer during unexpected wildlife encounters. In particular, Taylor suggests drivers heed the following suggestions:
- Use your high beams: Wildlife is often most active at dusk and dawn, according to the
Colorado Parks Department. If appropriate, while driving at night (when there is no fog present, or oncoming traffic) use your high beams to increase visibility and spot animals more easily. Or, stick to daylight hours if you can, to help reduce your risk.
- Heed warning signs: States and cities often place wildlife crossing signs near areas with heavy animal traffic for good reason - keep an eye out for signs, and of course, animals on the move.
- Stick to the middle lane: If you're on a multi-lane road, staying in the middle lane may give you more time to spot an animal that may be crossing ahead of you.
- Know what to do if an accident occurs: If you hit an animal, pull over and call local law enforcement. They can direct you on what actions to take. Make sure you stay away from the animal since they may only be stunned and might panic if you come close, causing additional harm to you or your vehicle.
- Get home safely: If you hit an animal, don't assume your car is safe to drive. Look for any leaks, loose parts, broken lights and tire damage. If you spot issues or if your vehicle seems unsafe, have the car towed.
"Farmers Insurance®" and "Farmers®" are tradenames for a group of insurers providing insurance for automobiles, homes and small businesses and a wide range of other insurance and financial services and products.
1 Based on historical data from auto claims filed with Farmers nationally between 2013 and 2018.
2 ORC International's CARAVAN®: This digest presents the findings of a survey conducted among a sample of 1,002 adults comprising 500 men and 502 women 18 years of age and older.
3 Insurance Information Institute: https://www.iii.org/article/avoid-a-deer-car-collision.
View original content to download multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/farmers-insurance-finds-accidents-with-animals-spike-in-the-fall-months-300916500.html