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DOT Warns Motorists To Watch Out For Deer

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Now that fall has arrived, the North Carolina

Department of Transportation

wants motorists to be aware of the increased presence of deer on the state's roads.

Each year, there are more than 14,000 reported animal-vehicle crashes, mostly involving deer, resulting in an estimated $31 million in property damage.

The peak time for deer-vehicle collisions tends to be in the fall of the year, between the months of October and December. Most occur in the early-morning hours (4:30 a.m.-7:30 a.m.) and in the early- to late-evening hours (5 p.m-12 a.m.).

Motorists should be aware of the increased potential for crashes as deer activity increases due to mating season and movement related to hunting season.

Furthermore, the decreasing daylight makes it more difficult to see and react to deer in the roadway.

The DOT offers these suggestions for avoiding deer-vehicle collisions:

  • Drive slower and be more aware of your surroundings during the late evening and near daylight, especially in posted deer areas.
  • Drive with headlights on high beam when possible. Watch out for eyes reflected in the headlights.
  • Reduce your speed if you see deer, even if they are far from the road. Deer often travel in groups, so do not assume that all is clear if one deer already has passed.
  • In addition to increasing the public's awareness, the DOT is evaluating a number of measures to help reduce collision. The measures include netting and fencing, crosswalks, underpasses and overpasses, reflectors, deer herd reduction, right-of-way plantings, chemical repellents, warning signs and infra-red detectors.

    The department also has committed to partnering with other state and wildlife agencies to reduce the number deer and vehicle collisions.

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