Bucks are running after does around the countryside, and many are chasing the objects of their affection out of the woods and onto the roads. When a deer collides with a car, damage amounts to an average cost of
"Drivers really need to be aware of their surroundings and circumstances," said
Taylor had his own run-in with a big antlered buck two Novembers ago. It was early in the morning, near an urban area. The deer came out from the side of the road and collided with Taylor's car.
"All I saw was a blur before the contact," Taylor said.
The animal got up and ran off, but the car was almost a total loss.
"I was able to just barely drive it the couple of blocks to my office," Taylor said. "It was a very scary experience."
Of more than 1.9 million animal collision claims reported in the
The study found that
"As you get into late September, we see a bit of a spike in animal losses, and it's mostly from deer," said
In 2017, deer were involved in 4.8% of crashes on Illinois roads, or 1 in 20, according to the
Deer are also an issue for drivers during the spring, when mother deer send yearlings off on their own, said
To avoid deer strikes, here are some tips from insurance experts:
-- Use extra caution and reduce your speed when driving into animal crossing zones, areas known to have large wildlife populations and places where roads divide agricultural fields from forest areas. Many encounters occur at dawn and dusk.
-- If you're traveling on a road with multiple lanes, try to stay in the center lane, which will provide more time to react to hazards.
-- Be vigilant while you're driving, which means not looking at your cell phone. Wear your seat belt, because collisions can happen no matter how careful you are.
-- Turn on high beams at night when there is no oncoming traffic. If you encounter a deer, switch the headlights to low so animals are not blinded and can move out of the way.
-- If you see one deer, assume that there are more, since they often travel together.
-- Try to slow down and stop if it is safe to do so, to allow the deer to clear the road, Glenn said. Stay in your lane and do not swerve, since this can cause you to hit another vehicle and/or lose control of the car.
-- Motorcyclists should wear protective gear, have powerful driving lights and constantly scan roadsides and slow down in areas with heavy animal populations.
If you do hit a deer, call law enforcement to let them know what happened.
Drivers also should make sure vehicles can be driven safely after a crash, insurers said.
"If you think of new cars, with all the automation and sensors, [a deer] can do quite a bit of damage," said Glenn of Allstate. "It can take out your headlights. You can have suspension damage, a leaking radiator or flat tires."
A driver who kills a deer in a collision in
Transportation song quiz
Our last quiz asked for a band named for a way of getting around. The band was The Cars, and its well-loved rhythm guitarist, singer and songwriter
This week's song is about coming across a crash. Looks like whiskey claimed another victim -- it mixed with the blood and the glass.
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