Often when we encounter a deer, we think of this beautiful creature much as it was portrayed in Disney’s film “Bambi.” Rarely would we think such a beautiful animal could pose a threat to our personal safety.
The nationwide odds of colliding with a deer are 1 in 169 most of the year. Between October and December – mating season, however, a driver is twice as likely to encounter a deer.
Many factors play into collision risk: urban sprawl, animal mobility during hunting and mating seasons, time of day, health of the deer population, driver inattentiveness and higher speeds on roadways in deer habitats. You can take some basic steps to decrease your risk of property damage, injury or death resulting from a collision with Bambi:
- Be sure that you and all your vehicle’s occupants are wearing a seatbelt.
- When there’s no oncoming traffic, sources encourage use of high beams to increase your chances of seeing a deer in the dark and reacting.
- While a deer strike can happen anywhere, pay particular attention in areas marked as deer zones. Scan the road and surrounding areas, including woods, fields and waterways for deer. Be particularly vigilant at dusk and dawn and know that when you see one deer, you’ll likely see others.
- Honk your horn if you see a deer in the road to try to scare it off.
- Slow down because at high rates of speed, you will not have time to respond. If you see a deer, stay your course and brake calmly.
Above all, do not swerve into the other lane and risk losing control of your vehicle, or worse yet, crash head on with another vehicle. You’re better off swerving in the direction from which the animal came from since it will likely continue its forward momentum. If you have to, hit the deer!
If you do hit the deer in the South San Francisco region, know that we’ll be there to help you get your vehicle back to pre-accident condition.
Peninsula Auto Body, Inc.
1430 San Mateo Ave.
S. San Francisco, CA 94080