Fall brings an increased chance of deer encounters while driving. This is because the animals travel more than usual to mate and search for sufficient food to help them survive the oncoming winter.
While drivers certainly should think about what they can do to prevent the chance of killing a deer and damaging their vehicle and possibly themselves in the process, they must also prioritize not harming anyone else.
Each year, a lot of deer collisions or near misses result in one driver running into another. Often, the deer itself escapes unharmed, but you are left with a scenario where one driver’s split-second reaction has taken the life of, or seriously injured, people in another vehicle.
Stay in your lane and hit the deer if you have to
That is what driving experts recommend. Yes, it is upsetting to run into an animal, and yes, you could suffer, but swerving vastly increases the injury potential for you and others.
It’s easy to lose control when you try to swerve around a deer at the last minute. You could end up going off the road and straight into a tree, or if you go the other way, straight into the path of oncoming traffic.
Avoidance is best
Drivers should slow down in areas where deer are likely. This will reduce the chance that they need to make a split-second decision. They should also run their headlights to highlight deer from a distance and hopefully startle them into moving. Those two things can prevent many unnecessary accidents that leave people needing to claim significant compensation.