Tri-State enters peak months for deer-related crashes

October through December are the times of the year when crashes involving deer tend to increase.
October through December are the times of the year when crashes involving deer tend to increase.(Ga DNR)
Published: Oct. 5, 2021 at 1:05 PM EDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - It is peak time for deer-related crashes in the Tri-State, and drivers are being reminded to focus while on the road.

Both Kentucky and Ohio say October through December are when crashes involving deer tend to increase.

Mating seasons, hunting seasons and fall harvests mean deer will move around more, the states say

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Secretary Jim Gray shorter days and cooler nights bring a noticeable uptick in these types of crashes.

“Drivers should be vigilant at all times, but the autumn presents a special challenge for drivers, with deer and other wildlife increasingly on the move, often at night,” Gray said.

Drivers are encouraged to be extra cautious in areas where fencerows, riparian corridors, or other blocks of forested habitat intersect a roadway.

Here are some tips on how to improve safety while driving:

  • Scan the road ahead: Looking ahead helps provide enough reaction time if an animal is spotted. Also, remember some animals, like deer, move in groups, so when there is one, there are usually more in the area.
  • Use high beam headlights if there is no oncoming traffic: This can help you spot deer or other wildlife more quickly and give you time to slow down, move over or honk the horn to scare the animal away. High beams also help in spotting animals’ reflective eyes.
  • Be extra cautious at dawn and dusk: Deer tend to be more active in the early morning and at dusk. That’s why these are peak times for deer-vehicle collisions.
  • If a collision is unavoidable, apply the brakes firmly and remain in your lane: Swerving to avoid an animal can often cause a more serious crash or cause you to lose control of your vehicle. Drivers who swerve to miss a deer and hit something else may be charged for an at-fault crash.
  • Always wear a seatbelt and remain awake, alert, and sober: The chances of getting injured when hitting an animal are much higher if you don’t have your seatbelt on. If you’re distracted or drowsy, you’re not properly scanning the road for deer and could end up spotting them too late.

Drivers in Kentucky have a one in 88 chance of crash involving an animal, according to KYTC.

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