Ways To Avoid Hitting a Deer on Illinois Roads
It's deer mating season and that means you're going to see a lot more deer crossing the roads. These tips can help you avoid a dangerous collision.
Deer mating season just began and already I've had a collision. At approximately 7 p.m. Sunday night on Belvidere Rd. in Roscoe, I saw a deer that had just crossed the road and was headed into the woods. What happened next was my biggest mistake. It's mating season and most dear will not be crossing the road alone. It was a doe that I saw that had already crossed the road, I didn't even see the buck that came flying across the road next and I hit it's hind-quarters with the passenger side of my SUV.
These tips will help keep you mindful of what you're likely going to see often over the next few months
According to an article at geico.com, 1.6 million deer-vehicle collisions occur each year, resulting in 200 fatalities, tens of thousands of injuries and over $3.6 billion in vehicle damage.
When driving this Fall, you should:
- (Here's the tip I wish would've been top of mind for me) Watch for the rest of the gang. Deer are pack animals, and rarely travel alone. If a deer crosses in front of you, chances are there are more nearby. Slow down and keep an eye out for more deer darting across the road.
- Timing is everything. Deer are most active at dusk and dawn: periods when your vision is most compromised. To add to their terrible timing, deer are on the move during mating season.
- Stay Center. On a multi-lane road, the center lane is your safest bet for avoiding a deer collision, as long as your local traffic laws permit it. This gives deer plenty of space; and in case your vehicle does startle them, it gives you more time to react if one darts onto the road.
- Stay the course. If you see a deer, brake firmly and calmly, and stay in your lane. Swerving could make you lose control of your vehicle and turn a bad situation much worse.
- Honk. Some experts recommend that one long blast of the horn will scare deer out of the road. Do not rely on hood whistles or other devices designed to scare off deer, studies have shown them to be largely ineffective at minimizing accidents.
See more tips by clicking here.