As the Finger Lakes region braces for November, motorists are being cautioned about the heightened risk of car-deer collisions.
Studies from SUNY Albany indicate that the months from October to December see the majority of such crashes. This spike is attributed to deer breeding actively in the fall, leading to increased movement and frequent unexpected appearances on roadways. “During the fall, especially during dawn and early evening, motorists should be particularly vigilant for deer,” advised Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike, emphasizing the importance of heeding deer warning signs.
Recent data reveals a troubling trend in Yates County, where over 400 car-deer incidents were recorded in 2022. Already, October has seen an average of two such collisions daily. A particularly concerning incident involved a deer striking a motorcycle on Rte 14, severely injuring both riders. While the instinct might be to swerve to avoid an animal, officials recommend braking firmly instead. Swerving may lead to more dangerous outcomes, such as hitting another vehicle or roadside objects.
For those unfortunate enough to hit an animal, the Department of Environmental Conservation advises maintaining a safe distance from the injured creature, especially wounded deer which could become aggressive. Motorists should move their vehicles to safer locations, engage hazard lights, and call 911. Before resuming travel, it’s crucial to check the vehicle for any damage ensuring it’s safe to continue driving. If any doubt arises regarding the vehicle’s condition, it’s advised to call for towing assistance.
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