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Friday, 16 November 2018 23:41

Deer Crossing: Watch Out for Deer While You Drive in VA

Written by Leif Greiss, Bristol Herald Courier
A sign near a blind curve in Blountville warns drivers about the possibility of deer being in the road. A sign near a blind curve in Blountville warns drivers about the possibility of deer being in the road. Andre Teague, Bristol Herald Courier

Index

However, overall, it appears that the number of deer-involved collisions has slightly decreased nationally, despite more licensed drivers on the road. According to State Farm, it’s estimated that deer, elk, moose and caribou collisions dropped to 1.33 million in the U.S. between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2018, which is down from 1.34 million in 2017.

 

Of note for anyone who doesn’t mind road vittles: In Virginia, according to the state code, anyone who hits and kills a deer or bear can keep the animal as long as he or she gets it inspected by a conservation police officer or other law enforcement officer.

 

In Tennessee, anyone who hits a deer can keep it only if they contact the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency or a law enforcement official within 48 hours and give their name and address.

 

Tips to prevent deer-related accidents:

 

• Slow down, particularly at dusk and dawn, when animals are more active.

• If you see one deer, be prepared for more to cross the road.

• Use your high beams except when there is oncoming traffic.

• Brake if you can, but avoid swerving, which can result in a more severe crash.

• Pay attention to deer crossing signs.

• Do not rely on products such as deer whistles, which are not effective.

• Always wear a seat belt.

 

Sources: The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance; State Farm

 

Tips if you get into a collision:

 

• Stay calm.

 

• If possible, move your vehicle to a safe place like the side of the road, and turn on your four-way lights.

 

• Call the police if the deer is blocking traffic and creating a threat for other drivers. If the collision results in injury or property damage, you may need to fill out an official report.

 

• Stay away from the animal. A frightened, wounded deer could harm you with its legs and hooves.

 

• Document the incident. If it’s safe to do so, take photographs of the road, your surroundings, damage to your vehicle and any injuries you or your passengers sustained.

 

Sources: The Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance; State Farm

 

We thank Bristol Herald Courier for reprint permission.


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