People living in the countryside or for someone who is wandering through woodland areas for exploring or camping the very prospect of hitting any road dwelling animal is heart-wrenching. And when it's precisely about an animal as delicate and beautiful as the deer, well who would want to hurt that pretty creature?
With deforestation and the wildlife losing their natural habitat, the spikes of encountering certain animals such as the deer are getting pretty high. This fact may look unique to you but the statistics on deer-car accident will surprise you even more.
Part 1: Some researches on the deer accidentAccording to a survey conducted by The National Highway Safety Administration (NHSA), an approximate 1.5 million car-deer accident occurs annually. These accidents become the reason for 175-200 casualties and 10,000 serious injuries. The stats don't just stop there. Deer accident further leads to spending millions of dollars on vehicle repair and damages. Usually, the chances of meeting a deer on the road increases during the months of October, November and December. So, how does deer appear on the road in the first place? The below questions will clear your doubts on this matter.
- Why are deer attracted to the road and get hit by cars?
Basically, deer do not have any particular attraction for roads and highways. Due to a disturbance in their natural habitat, they have moved closer to the human settlement. You will find many deer grazing patches of grasses around the woods near the countryside or roaming in search of food near highways. But more specifically the sound of traffic and moving vehicles startle them and they began to panic. You may not know but deer, when get frightened by a sound, get confused. So, instead of moving away from any oncoming car, they run towards the sound of it and cause serious crashes.
- Where they live and why they move?
Deer prefer to live deep down in the forest where they can find the right quality of food, a perfect breeding ground and thick leaves to hide from danger.
Deer is very conscious of its food and safety. They move around in search of food, mate and a secure place to lay down. End of summer and the mating season (July-August) provides you with the best chance of encountering a deer beside the road.
- Why do deer like running in front of cars?
Being a crepuscular animal deer is mostly active during twilight. During this time they are either looking for fresh food or crossing the road to simply go back to their shelter. There is a solid reason behind their behaviour towards an oncoming light. The high beams of headlights cause deer to go temporarily blind. Unable to see anything the deer just stand there blocking the way.
Part 2: Useful ways to avoid hitting deerNo matter how much intelligent an animal is, it is an animal after all. A deer is also a mere animal and you should have the sense and responsibility to make sure not to hurt yourself and the deer at the same time. Now, how to handle a deer-road-situation. Well, we have piled up some driving safety tips purely for your benefit under such circumstances.
- Drive defensively during peek deer hours
Well, before you set out on a highway trip running parallel beside a forest or an area heavily populated with deer then you need to switch on your defensive driver mode. Usually, areas with most deer sighting have signs posted on the road. Maintain a slow speed while driving through these lands. Also, peek deer hours are supposedly between sunset and midnight, also including hours just after sunrise. During these hours drive slowly especially while rounding turns and bends. Driving at a safe pace will allow you to take rapid defensive actions.
- Aid your vision with night vision car camera
These days, drivers who are out on the road during the late hours of the night, take an adequate safety precaution of installing a night vision device in their cars. Lanmodo Vast Pro night vision car camera is a promising brand in the field of the night vision system (NVS). This NVS works on the principle of low light image technique. It uses active infrared to capture high definition and colourful image of the road ahead. This is just the right device to boost your vision and making you aware of any deer lurking out in the dark.
- Use your horn as a helpful warning siren
What to do if you did come face to face with a deer standing in the middle of the road? You can easily control this situation as long as you don't panic. Stop your vehicle and try to scare the animal away by blowing your horn continuously. Or you can honk your horn with short blows along with flashing your headlights to make the creature go off.
- Stay (and break hard) in your lane
Deer-car accidents cause maximum damage when the driver drifts their vehicles to prevent a collision with the animal. Swerving your vehicle in the opposite direction will lead you to lose control over your car. The best you can do to avoid hitting the animal is to apply brakes as hard as you can. Once the car comes to a halt you can shift to the other lane or attempt to scare off the petty creature.