How to avoid hitting deer with your car this fall

VALLEY FORGE, Pa. - October 1, 2013

Action News has reported time and again how dangerous a collision can be between a car or SUV and a 300-pound deer.

A recent State Farm Insurance survey ranked Pennsylvania fourth in the nation in the likelihood of getting into a collision with a deer.

Only West Virginia, Iowa and South Dakota were higher. New Jersey and Delaware were in the middle of the pack.

So Pennsylvania state game officials thought this would be a good time to remind motorists that fall is the prime mating and migration season for deer.

There are several things you can do to protect yourself and your family on the road.

The first is to open your eyes and use common sense.

"In known deer areas where there are wooded areas or wood lots [motorists] can slow down and just be very careful," said Pennsylvania Game Commissioner Jerry Czech.

"A lot of times along highways you will see deer crossing signs," he continued, "and that will alert motorists these are areas where there are high deer accidents."

Consumer Reports has some more advice.

If you see deer along your route to work or home, make a note of it. They tend to gather in the same place, and the "where there's one, there's usually more" rule applies to deer, too.

Brake, do not swerve, to avoid a deer. You have a better chance of surviving a crash with a large animal than another car.

And realize deer tend to be most active at dawn, which could increase the danger in the fall.

"With the time change coming up, the sunlight, dawn and dusk, will coincide with rush hour traffic," said Czech.

Daylight Saving Time will end on Sunday, November 3rd, pushing sunset even earlier into the afternoon commute.

Experts say vigilance will be more important than ever.

Copyright © 2023 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.