Michigan Drivers Prepare for Upswing in Dangerous Deer and Vehicle Crashes
Michigan State Police are preparing for the peak of deer-vehicle collision (DVC) season. With over two million deer across the state, vehicle-deer crashes are a year-round problem but the upcoming month of November brings especially high odds for all types of motorists to hit a deer. Each year, there are nearly 50,000 reported vehicle-deer crashes in Michigan. About 80 percent of these crashes occur on two-lane roads between dusk and dawn. The most serious crashes occur when motorists swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or a fixed object, or when their vehicle rolls over.
How To Prevent a Car Wreck With a Deer
November is by far the worst month for deer accidents, followed by October and December. The dawn (5 – 8 a.m.) and evening (5 p.m. – 12 a.m.) hours are particularly dangerous. There are many steps drivers can take to minimize the likelihood of being involved in a car accident involving deer:
- Remember to always buckle up, as seat belts are motorists’ best defense in the event of a crash. If you travel with children they should always be seated in the appropriate size child seats for their age, height and weight and always strapped in.
- Deer can be hard to see, especially during the times they are most active, so keep your eyes on the road and avoid distractions. Distracted driving is driving while doing another activity that takes your attention away from driving.
- Watch for deer crossing signs. Slow down and use abundant caution in areas where the signs are posted. Remember that deer travel in groups. If you see one, you should expect that others are close by. Proceed with caution in these areas.
- When driving at night, don’t hesitate to use your high beams when there are no other vehicles present.
- If a deer freezes in front of your car, use one long, continuous blast of your car horn to attempt to get the animal to move.
If you are unable to avoid a DVC, it is important to NOT swerve but rather brake firmly, and hold tight to the steering wheel while staying in your lane. Do your best to bring your vehicle to a controlled stop. Make your safest attempt to pull off the road, turn on your emergency flashers and watch for other vehicles to avoid a crash. Lastly, if you do need medical assistance, dial 911 and call police immediately. Remember to take pictures of the scene, any injuries, the road conditions, and damages resulting from the crash. The insurance company will need to have these things.
Talk to A Michigan Car Accident Attorney
Our attorneys at The Lee Steinberg Law Firm are Michigan car accident experts, including DVC cases and representing those victims for over 40 years. If you have been involved in a DVC, whether it involved another vehicle or not, we will fight to ensure you receive the compensation and benefits you deserve under the law and work with insurance companies so you get the compensation you deserve. Please call Lee Free and speak to our deer-vehicle collision attorneys at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733) or fill out the Free Case Evaluation Form.