October through December is high deer season, during which there is a “dramatic increase in the movement of the deer population,” according to an Oct. 1, 2007 press release from the Insurance Information Institute (III).
Deer and cars have never been a good combo, and in recent years Bambi and her ilk have presented an increasing danger to drivers, mainly due to habitat encroachment (ours spilling into theirs).
Each year deer/car collisions cause thousand of injuries—and hundreds of deaths, according to a Sept 25, 2006 press release from the III. Additionally, the average cost per accident, when you factor in bodily injury and vehicle damage, totals over $10,000.
According to a 2005 study done by State Farm, these states have the highest number of deer-car collisions:
The good news is that wherever you live, vigilant driving works. (The bad news is that that deer whistle you just mounted to the Buick’s bumper doesn’t work.)
After a vigorous public awareness campaign, Pennsylvania-based Erie Insurance saw a 6 percent reduction in deer-related auto claims in 2005, according to a Oct. 9, 2006, article in the Insurance Journal. The takeaway? Regular reminders of the hazards will keep collisions down.
Here’s what you can do to minimize the risk of hitting a deer:
Additionally, you city slickers take note: deer aren’t just in the sticks and the ‘burbs—they’re common in urban areas too.
If you do hit a deer, the Insurance Information Institute recommends the following steps:
Lastly, note that collision with an animal is covered under the comprehensive—not collision, oddly enough—portion of your auto insurance policy.