FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The Indiana Department of Transportation, the Indiana State Police and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources offered reminders to drivers to stay alert as deer become more active in the fall months on Indiana’s roadways.
Nearly 50 percent of all vehicle crashes involving deer occur between October and December. Deer are generally move active during mating season in late October into early November. According to a press release from Indiana State Police, there were more than 15,000 deer-related collisions in 2015, including vehicles crashing in an attempt avoid striking deer.
The following reminders are to help drivers take measures to keep collisions with deer to a minimum:
- Deer are most active between sunset and sunrise, especially in rural areas.
- Deer often travel in groups. If you see one, others are likely nearby. Stay alert!
- Pay special attention in areas where you have seen deer before and in areas near “Deer Crossing” warning signs.
- Exercise caution along woodlot edges, at hills and blind turns.
- Use high-beam headlights at night when there is no opposing traffic.
- Scan for illuminated eyes and dark silhouettes near the side of or on the roadway.
- If you see a deer, slow your speed drastically, even if the deer is far away.
- Never swerve to avoid hitting a deer. More serious crashes occur when drivers try to miss a deer but hit something else.
- As always, buckle up.
If a driver does hit a deer, DNR reminds drivers not to touch wounded deer, as they can dangerous. Drivers should pull off the road and remain in the vehicle. Motorists involved in a collision are required to call the police and report with at least $1,000 in property damage or if someone in injured. The press release added that studies have shown deer whistles and other such novelties are ineffective at deterring deer.
To report a deer carcass on an interstate, U.S. highway or state road, contact one of INDOT’s six districts to report it. For more information visit Indiana Department of Transportation.