Look out for those deer this Holiday Season

With deer mating season now underway, the NJTPA encourages motorists to drive with extra caution and to keep an eye out for animals entering the roadway. While the number of reported deer-vehicle crashes in the region has declined steadily in recent years, the crashes remain a particular hazard in the state’s suburban and rural areas.

According to an analysis by the NJTPA, there were 47,554 animal-vehicle crashes in the 13-county NJTPA region from 2008 through 2015, including 5,345 last year.

Although statewide data doesn’t distinguish between deer and other animal crashes, federal research indicates that roughly nine out of 10 vehicle-animal crashes involve deer. In addition, studies have shown that motorists only report as few as half of deer-vehicle crashes to authorities.

Deer crashes are highly seasonal, with half typically occurring between the months of October and December. Thirty-five percent of crashes in 2013 occurred in October and November. In addition, three-quarters of crashes tend to occur between dusk and dawn.

Some tips:

  • As always, DO NOT use your phone while driving
  • Pay extra attention when driving on roads lined with trees and wooded areas
  • If you see a deer on the road then pay closer attention for more in the area
  • Use high beams at night when no other cars are approaching
  • If you see a deer in the road, hold the steering wheel and brake hard. DO NOT veer for the deer

As always, have a safe and happy holiday season! 

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