Oh deer! What to know about animal collisions

As fall approaches, drivers everywhere will have a new set of factors to consider as they get behind the wheel. Earlier sunsets mean less visible roads and, depending on where you live, a change in weather could result in more rain or snow. These are just a few conditions drivers can expect as the season changes.

But the fall also signifies the seasonal migration of animals, particularly deer, throughout large parts of the country. One-third (34%) of all animal collision comprehensive claims are filed during the fall, according to Farmers Insurance.

Facts and figures to consider: 

Nearly two-thirds (64%) of Americans who participated in a recent Farmers/ORC International survey think stopping short or swerving should they encounter a deer on the road is usually the best option to minimize damage.

Best driving practices for the fall:

Try to schedule drives during the daylight hours to reduce the likelihood of an animal encounter. Wildlife is more active at dusk and dawn, and limited vision during those times will make it harder to spot an animal.

Steps to take if you hit a deer:

  1. If you hit an animal, pull over and call local law enforcement. They can direct you on what actions to take. In some states, there are special requirements regarding animal collisions. 
  2. Stay away from the animal because it may only be stunned. It may panic causing additional harm to you or your vehicle if you're too close. 
  3. Once home, check with your state's department of motor vehicles to make sure you've covered all your bases. 

As the fall approaches, drivers should consider the growing number of risks the season presents. Keeping these helpful tips in mind will help drivers stay safe as we transition into the fall. 

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