MA Drivers: How Can You Avoid Animal Collisions? We Have Some Answers
Massachusetts drivers: This article is custom made just for you! This probably occurred at some point while you're behind the wheel: As dusk and darkness fall in and visibility becomes more difficult, two deer leap onto the busy road. YIKES! It's not an uncommon sight for many drivers, especially during the months October, November and December. Keep in mind, these three months constitute mating season (Hey, even animals need some TLC from their brethren, I'll stop right there).
New information from State Farm's annual analysis shows U.S. drivers on the average have a 1 in 115 chance of a collision with an animal. The insurance company estimates there were over 1.9 million animal collision insurance claims in the U.S. between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022 (the bright spot is 117,200 less claims were submitted than in the previous 12-month period observed).
Which states rank in the top 10 when it comes to car and animal collisions? Here is the latest list.
At # 1 West Virginia, Montana is second followed by South Dakota. Michigan and Neighboring Wisconsin rounded out the top 5. Pennsylvania is 6th, followed by Iowa, Mississippi, North Dakota and Wyoming pick up the last three spots.
Closer to home, The Bay State, Vermont and Rhode Island are medium risk states where cars and animals collide with one another, although I dispute that claim because there have been some close calls while driving. Thankfully, no damage was done.
In neighboring New York and Connecticut both states have a low risk ranking and again I dispute this because when I lived in Lakeville back in the 90's, a deer hit my Toyota Tercel head first and flew on the curb of route 44. The repair bill was costly, even though insurance covers you, that dreaded deductible plays a role in emptying your wallet, therefore I had plenty of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches during that time, but thankfully, no injuries were reported.
Here are some tips to avoid hitting animals on the road:
First of all, STAY ALERT! Don't even think of looking at your phone and watch for deer or wildlife crossing signs particularly in wooded areas.
Flash your high beams as this will cause the animal to scurry away and if foggy conditions are non-existent, this will illuminate dark roads where lighting is scarce.
Maintain control of your vehicle at ALL TIMES! Reduce your speed and if necessary, a car horn will startle the animal in question. Use your brakes to alert other drivers. Collisions occur mainly between dusk and dawn as you should exercise caution.
Remember, if you see one deer, there are more nearby. On a recent trip in upstate New York, I saw four deer crossing together on route 20 in broad daylight, but thankfully my distance prevented any mishap from occurring. Again, paying attention to your surrounding areas is paramount and ALWAYS wear your seat belt.
Statistics also show those car mounted deer whistles are NOT effective to prevent a collision. My advice: Don't waste your money as common sense will prevent any further problems.
BOTTOM LINE: It is not pleasant when your car and an animal lock oars. make sure you also have comprehensive coverage on your insurance policy as any opportunity to save some money is a welcome sight.
.(Some information obtained in this article courtesy of www.statefarm.com)
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Gallery Credit: Nicole Caldwell