Oh Deer!

A deer came out of nowhere a couple of days ago as my Daddy was driving home from work. He swerved to try to miss it and hit the cable median on the highway. Thank God he's o.k. He had no serious injuries. There were only some minor damages to the car. It could have been worst. Knowing this could happen to any of us, I wanted to pass along some tips on how you could minimize the chances of it happening to you.

I did my research and this is what I found:
  • Colliding with a deer can happen any time of the year, but chances are higher in the fall and winter months because 1) it is deer mating season and 2) low food supply. A doe may stop to look both ways but the buck chasing her has other things on his mind. If you see one deer on the side of the road, there's usually more along with it.
  • Flash your lights or honk your horn to frighten deer away from the side of the road.
  • Stay alert. Deer can be very unpredictable, especially when they are frightened.
  • Be on the lookout for deer crossing signs and slow down. Be aware of your surroundings, just because you don’t see a deer crossing sign posted, it doesn’t mean deer won’t unexpectedly appear.
  • Don’t swerve your vehicle to avoid hitting a deer. If you can’t avoid the accident, then just hit the deer while maintaining control of your vehicle. Some experts say that if such a collision is inevitable, you should avoid braking at impact so that the deer may pass underneath your car as opposed to hitting the windshield. (See picture below)
  • When you encounter deer along the roadside, turn on your emergency lights to let other motorists know about the potential danger.
  • Don’t rely on hood-mounted deer whistles and other devices to scare away deer. Wildlife biologists have not found any conclusive evidence that these type of devices work.
  • Always wear your seat belt.
Tip Source: By Laura Jones, Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Fall 2004

Please remember these tips and DRIVE WITH CAUTION!