Where you live plays a major role in the types of roadway conditions you’ll encounter throughout the year. In South Carolina, local motorists have a number of roadway concerns unique to our geographic area – including deer.
Take a quick look at these deer accident statistics from State Farm:
- During 2013 – 2014, South Carolina ranked 10 th nationally in deer / vehicle collisions.
- The odds of a South Carolina driver hitting a deer during 2014 were roughly 1 out of 93 – almost double the national average.
- Each year in the U.S., there are about 1.5 million animal-car accidents (including deer). These accidents cause an estimated 10,000 injuries, 150 deaths, and $2,500 in property damage, on average.
Although fall and winter months – specifically October, November, and December – tend to see increases in deer collisions because of mating and hunting seasons, car wrecks involving deer occur with alarming regularity throughout the year. We share the state with many deer and animals, and they often find their way onto public roads and highways.
Because deer accidents can result in extensive property damage and serious injuries, our legal team at George Sink, P.A. Injury Lawyers wants to help everyone prevent and avoid deer a deer accident. Below are a few helpful tips and safety precautions that can reduce risks:
- Pay attention – Always pay attention to the act of driving and scan down the road and off to either side to check for signs of deer or other hazards, especially near woods of water. If you see a deer, slow down and pass carefully, as they can jump out onto the road. Also, if you see a deer, there’s a good chance there are more nearby.
- Watch for warning signs – Deer crossing or other animal warning signs are placed in locations where animals frequently walk onto roadways. Be alert and watch out for these signs. You should also remember that just because there isn’t a sign doesn’t mean there won’t be deer.
- Use your headlights – make sure to use your headlights in the morning and at nigh to help you spot any deers or potential dangers. If you do see a deer, it is best to flash your brights several times. Since deer can become fixated on headlights, flashing your brights is considered better at causing them to scurry away.
- Be vigilant at peak times – Deers are most likely to be out and near roads around dusk and dawn. Be extra vigilant at these times, as they are also times that are difficult for drivers to see.
- Brake as needed – If you’re able to safely do so after spotting a deer, reduce your speed, tap your brakes to warn other drivers, and sound your horn. If there are no other vehicles around, brake harder. Braking is more preferable than swerving, as it can cause you to go off the road or into a lane of opposing traffic.