How Many Car Accidents Are Caused By Deer?

Reginald Gray
Founder and Chief Editor at - PersonalInjuryJustice

Reginald Gray is the visionary force behind PersonalInjuryJustice. A seasoned lawyer with over two decades of experience in personal injury law, Reginald's profound understanding of...Read more

Every year, thousands of car accidents occur due to animal collisions. While some of these accidents involve smaller critters like squirrels and rabbits, others can be much more dangerous. One of the most common culprits is the humble deer, and the number of accidents caused by these animals is on the rise.

Deer are beautiful animals, but they can be a real menace on the road. According to recent statistics, there are over 1.5 million deer-related car accidents each year in the United States alone. So, how many of these accidents are caused by deer specifically, and what can we do to prevent them? Let’s take a closer look.

Each year, there are approximately 1.5 million car accidents in the United States caused by deer. These accidents result in an estimated $1 billion in vehicle damage and around 150 human fatalities. The majority of these accidents occur in the fall during deer mating season when deer are more active. It is important to be cautious and aware while driving in areas with high deer populations.

How Many Car Accidents Are Caused by Deer?

How Many Car Accidents Are Caused by Deer?

Deer are beautiful creatures that roam the wild. They are a common sight in many parts of North America, and their presence is often appreciated. However, deer can also be a hazard to drivers, causing a significant number of car accidents each year. In this article, we will explore how many car accidents are caused by deer and what you can do to stay safe on the road.

Deer Car Accident Statistics

Deer car accidents are a serious issue in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), there were an estimated 1.5 million car accidents involving deer between July 1, 2019, and June 30, 2020. These accidents resulted in 149 human deaths and thousands of injuries.

The states with the highest number of deer car accidents are Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. However, deer car accidents can happen anywhere in the United States, especially in areas where deer populations are high.

The Cost of Deer Car Accidents

Deer car accidents can be costly. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the average cost per claim for deer car accidents is around $4,000. This includes the cost of vehicle repairs and medical expenses. In 2019, the total cost of deer car accidents in the United States was estimated to be over $1 billion.

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When Do Deer Car Accidents Occur?

Deer car accidents are most likely to occur during the fall and winter months. This is because deer are more active during mating season (October to December) and are often on the move looking for food and shelter. Deer are also more active during dawn and dusk, which are times when visibility is low and drivers may not be able to see them.

How to Avoid Deer Car Accidents

Deer car accidents can be avoided by following a few simple tips.

Be Alert and Pay Attention

The first step in avoiding a deer car accident is to be alert and pay attention to your surroundings. Look for deer crossing signs and be aware of your surroundings, especially during the fall and winter months.

Use Your High Beams

Using your high beams can help you see deer on the road ahead of you. However, be sure to dim your lights when there is oncoming traffic.

Slow Down and Brake

If you see a deer on the road ahead of you, slow down and brake. This will give you more time to react if the deer runs in front of your vehicle.

Avoid Swerving

Swerving to avoid a deer can be dangerous, especially if you are driving at high speeds. It is better to hit the deer than to swerve and potentially cause a more serious accident.

Wear Your Seatbelt

Wearing your seatbelt can help protect you in the event of a deer car accident. Make sure that everyone in your vehicle is wearing their seatbelt as well.

The Benefits of Deer Car Accidents

While deer car accidents are a serious issue, there are some benefits to them as well.

Food for People in Need

In some states, deer that are killed in car accidents can be donated to local food banks and charities. This provides a source of protein for people in need.

Ecological Benefits

Deer car accidents can also have ecological benefits. Deer populations can be managed through hunting and other methods, which can help maintain a healthy balance of wildlife in the area.

Deer Car Accidents vs. Other Animal Car Accidents

Deer car accidents are not the only type of animal-related car accidents. Other common animals involved in car accidents include moose, elk, and bears. Deer car accidents are more common than other animal car accidents, but the tips for avoiding them are similar.

Deer vs. Moose Car Accidents

Moose car accidents are less common than deer car accidents, but they can be more dangerous. Moose are larger and heavier than deer and can cause significant damage to vehicles and injure passengers.

Deer vs. Bear Car Accidents

Bear car accidents are also less common than deer car accidents. However, bears are more likely to cause serious injuries or fatalities if they are hit by a vehicle.

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Conclusion

Deer car accidents are a serious issue in the United States, causing thousands of injuries and millions of dollars in damage each year. By being alert and following a few simple tips, you can avoid a deer car accident and stay safe on the road. Remember to always wear your seatbelt and pay attention to your surroundings, especially during the fall and winter months when deer are more active.

Frequently Asked Questions

Deer accidents are a common occurrence, especially in areas with high deer populations. Here are some of the frequently asked questions about car accidents caused by deer:

What percentage of car accidents are caused by deer?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, deer are responsible for approximately one million car accidents in the United States each year. This accounts for around 200 deaths and over $1 billion in damages. The percentage of car accidents caused by deer varies by state, but it is generally higher in rural areas with high deer populations.

It is important for drivers to be aware of the risks and take precautions, such as reducing speed in areas with high deer populations and being extra vigilant during dawn and dusk when deer are most active.

What time of year do deer cause the most car accidents?

The majority of car accidents caused by deer occur between October and December, which is the mating season for deer. During this time, deer are more active and are more likely to be crossing roads. Drivers should be extra cautious during this time of year and be prepared to slow down or stop if they see a deer on or near the road.

It is also important to note that deer can cause car accidents year-round, so drivers should always be alert and aware of their surroundings.

What should I do if I hit a deer with my car?

If you hit a deer with your car, the first priority is to make sure you and any passengers are safe. Pull over to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights. If the deer is still alive, do not approach it as it may be injured and could be dangerous. Instead, call the police and report the accident.

If your car is damaged, you may need to file a claim with your insurance company. Some insurance policies cover deer accidents, but it is important to check your policy and understand your coverage.

How can I avoid hitting a deer with my car?

There are several steps you can take to reduce the risk of hitting a deer with your car. First, be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye out for deer crossing signs. Reduce your speed in areas with high deer populations, especially during dawn and dusk when deer are most active.

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If you see a deer on or near the road, slow down and be prepared to stop. If there are other cars behind you, use your hazard lights to signal that you are slowing down. Finally, always wear your seatbelt and make sure your headlights are working properly so you can see the road ahead.

What should I do if a deer runs in front of my car?

If a deer runs in front of your car, the first thing you should do is brake firmly and stay in your lane. Swerving to avoid the deer could cause you to lose control of your car or collide with another vehicle. If you do hit the deer, pull over to the side of the road and follow the same steps as if you hit a deer with your car.

Remember, the best way to avoid a car accident caused by a deer is to be aware of your surroundings and take precautions when driving in areas with high deer populations.

Avoiding car-deer crashes


In conclusion, it’s clear that deer-related car accidents are a significant problem that affects thousands of drivers every year. While it’s difficult to estimate exactly how many accidents are caused by deer, it’s safe to say that the number is quite high. Drivers should always be aware of their surroundings and take appropriate precautions, such as slowing down and using their high beams when driving in areas where deer are known to be active.

It’s also important for local authorities to take steps to reduce the risk of deer-related accidents, such as installing warning signs and building fences to keep deer away from roadways. By working together, we can help to reduce the number of accidents caused by deer and make our roads safer for everyone.

In the end, it’s up to all of us to be responsible and take the necessary steps to avoid deer-related accidents. By staying alert and taking precautions, we can help to prevent these accidents and ensure that everyone gets home safely. So the next time you’re out on the road, remember to keep an eye out for deer and do your part to stay safe.

Reginald GrayFounder and Chief Editor at - PersonalInjuryJustice

Reginald Gray is the visionary force behind PersonalInjuryJustice. A seasoned lawyer with over two decades of experience in personal injury law, Reginald's profound understanding of the legal landscape and his deep empathy for victims inspired the creation of PersonalInjuryJustice. His only mission is to ensure victims have easy access to comprehensive, authentic information to assist them in their fight for justice. As Chief Editor, he rigorously ensures our content's accuracy, reliability, and pertinence.

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