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Drivers Warned About Increased Deer Movement
By West Kentucky Star Staff
WESTERN KENTUCKY - The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is reminding the public to be mindful of deer-vehicle collision season.

According to officials, half of all deer-vehicle collisions occur from October through December. In a recent study, Kentucky ranked 15th in the nation for collisions involving deer.

The shorter days and cooler evenings kick off the fall deer mating season. Officials say that increased activity by farmers may also contribute to the movement of the deer.

“Driving during twilight hours can be especially hazardous this time of year,” said KYTC District 1 Chief Engineer Kyle Poat said. “Deer are more likely to be on the move around sunrise and sunset, the time of day when they can easily be missed moving among the shadows.”

According to statistics, in 2018 over 3,000 collisions were reported across the state, which is a slight drop from the 3,200 reported collisions that occurred in 2017. A recent study found that Graves, Marshall, Calloway, and Lyon counties were in the top 40 for deer related collisions in 2018, with McCracken County just above that at 46.

Not only will it damage a vehicle, the collisions have contributed to more than 100 injuries, and are blamed for approximately three deaths in Kentucky each year. Nationally deer are blamed for approximately 200 fatalities each year.

Transportation officials provided several tips to help improve safety during deer-collision season:

1. Slow down immediately when you spot a deer crossing the roadway ahead, as deer tend to travel in groups.
2. Don’t swerve to avoid a deer. Swerving can result in a more serious crash with an oncoming vehicle or roadside object.
3. In the event of a crash, keep both hands on the wheel and apply brakes steadily until stopped.
4. Motorists are asked to report all deer-vehicle collisions to police so locations and crash numbers can be recorded and monitored.
5. Always wear a safety belt.
6. Keep headlights on bright unless other vehicles are approaching.

Published 10:00 PM, Tuesday Oct. 08, 2019
Updated 06:42 PM, Tuesday Oct. 08, 2019

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