You might start seeing more of one species on the road soon, now that fall has arrived. State Police said over the next three months, deer and car collisions will be on the rise. Our Elyse Mickalonis explains why, and tells us what Troopers want drivers to do.
STATEWIDE -- It's something that happens every year during the months leading up to winter.
“This time of the year we see an increase in car versus deer strikes primarily during early morning hours and evening hours in the twilight,” said Sgt. Jason Cawley, New York State Police.
State Police said the number of deer and car collisions increases during the fall because it's mating season.
“The deer rut starts in early October and ends in early December. Deer are on the move, they’re moving day and night, but primarily more in early morning hours and twilight in the evening,” said Cawley.
According to officials, there are nearly 65,000 crashes in New York state involving white-tailed deer annually. Experts said the climbing wildlife population and mild weather this year could increase the number of accidents. Troopers said whether you’re driving on a back roads or highways, with low lighting or bad road conditions, the best thing to do to avoid hitting a deer is to simply slow down.
“Please drive safely. Don’t over drive your headlights at night and if it’s foggy, slow down so you’re able to stop in the distance you can see,” said Cawley.
Cawley says if you’re about to hit a deer, do not swerve your car.
“If a deer strike is imminent, its best to hang on, hopefully the deer gets out of the roadway and hopefully the deer will move,” said Cawley. “But swerving to miss a deer and ending up in a ditch is not good either.”
Officials said if you do strike a deer and can safely move your vehicle off the road, do so and call 911 right away. Do not approach an injured deer as it can be very dangerous.