A new report from State Farm says that Missouri remains among the top states for risk of deer collisions.
State Farm compiled data showing Missouri had the 12th-highest number of deer collisions over the last year, with over 38,000 (38,603) collisions occurring statewide. That is a crash rate of 1 in 110 drivers throughout the state of Missouri and an increase of nearly 1,000 crashes from the prior year.
Missourians’ chances of hitting a deer increased 4.5% compared to 2017.
In Missouri, October & November are the months with the most collisions, with about double the risk of other months. With nearly 20% of all collisions occurring during the month of November, it is clearly marked as the most dangerous month to travel.
The U.S. saw 1.33 million total deer collisions over the last year, with an average cost per claim of just over $4,000. Pennsylvania saw the most collisions, with 141,777. Hawaii saw the least, with just 146. West Virginia saw the highest collision rate for the 12th straight year, with 1 in 46 drivers experiencing a deer collision. Those numbers are absolutely alarming. So, what can you do to ensure you and your family are safe?
- Deer are considered to be road hazards. Slow downas you would for other hazards such as unfavorable weather conditions. Drive at a speed that will allow you to stop in time if you see a deer ahead.
- Dusk to dawn is the high-risk time of day. Use high beamsto help light up deer sooner and be prepared to stop, never swerve to miss a deer.
- High risk areas are found near wooded areas and water. Deer use forests for shelter and clearings for food, so suburbs can be a prime habitat for deer.
- If you see a deer, brake and sound your horn. The noise may startle or freeze the deer in its tracks. No matter how tempting, don’t swerve out of your lane to avoid the animal.
- Buckle up. Seat belts reduce the risk of fatal injury by 60% in an SUV and 45% in a car.
Should you encounter a deer and fall victim to a collision be sure to follow the tips below.
- Move your vehicle.If your vehicle is in operating condition, move it to a safe spot and turn on your hazard lights to eliminate additional collisions that may result with other drivers on the roadway.
- Always call the police if a deer is obstructing the road for other drivers, and call your insurance company to file your claim.
- Take photos. Take photosof the damage, the road and your surroundings to assist with your insurance claim and track every detail of the auto collision.
- Stay away from the animal. –A wounded or frightened deer can be dangerous. Let the authorities handle the animal for your own protection.
- Don’t assume your vehicle is safe to drive. Check for fluid leaks, loose parts, tire damage, and broken lights. Often times there can be hidden damage that will prevent your vehicle from getting you home safely after a collision.
Everyone here at Spirit West Motor Carriage Auto Body Repair wishes you safe travels during deer season! If you are in need of auto collision repair service contact Spirit West Motor Carriage at 636.394.1712 Monday through Friday between 7:30am-5:30pm or stop by our convenient location at 610 Park Lane, Manchester, MO 63021.