What You Need to Know If You Hit a Deer With Your Car

deer crossing road in upstate nyAccidents happen. Even if you’re cautious about avoiding animal collisions, deer accidents in the Adirondack region are fairly common due to the high population of deer that live in this area.

So if an auto-deer accident occurs, here’s what to do:

First thing’s first…relax! O’Brien Insurance in upstate NY has got you covered! Make sure you and everyone in your vehicle is alright.

Secondly, move your car to a safe place and turn on your hazards. Don’t get out of your vehicle unless absolutely necessary and stay out of the way of oncoming cars. Do not approach the animal for any reason! Animals, especially when injured, can be dangerous, so wait for authorities to handle it.

Next, call 911. If the deer is in the middle or on the side of the road, it can pose a serious safety hazard to other vehicles. Although most insurance companies don’t require a police report to file a comprehensive claim for hitting a deer, this step ensures validation by the adjuster that it was actually an animal you hit. Also, it may seem like nobody is hurt at that moment, but later on, should you develop any medical problems as a result of hitting the deer, you will want to have a police report for that.

After you file a police report, don’t just assume that your vehicle is fine to drive, even if it appears to be and the damage doesn’t look too bad. Check for unlatched hoods, tire damage, and leaking fluid. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so if you’re unsure whether your vehicle is safe to drive, call a tow truck.

Take a breather. After you go home and compose yourself, call your insurance provider. O’Brien Insurance, serving the Adirondack region, deals with many deer-related accidents, and living in the North Country, we all know hitting one is probably going to happen at one time or another.

deer auto accident tips

Many times it isn’t until after an accident that people realize just how convenient and nice it is to have a hometown insurance provider that they can actually call up or speak with face-to-face. Let us worry about the paperwork, so you can take care of everything else.

Read our testimonials and find out why O’Brien Insurance, serving the upstate NY and Adirondack areas, is your #1 choice for friendly service and quality coverage at competitive rates!

While many collisions with deer are unavoidable, there are a few things you can do to minimize the risk of hitting a deer with your vehicle.

  • Deer are most active at night, sunrise, and at the end of fall and beginning of winter (not that you can’t run into them at any time). Be extra watchful during these times.
  • Take deer crossing signs seriously!
  • If you see one deer, there are probably more.
  • If there are three lanes, drive in the middle. This will give you more time to see a deer if they decide to run out in front of you.
  • Use your high beams whenever possible.
  • Stay alert! Avoid calling or texting anyone while driving (obviously!), drive below the speed limit during limited vision times, and scan roadsides constantly for deer.

Just remember:  After an accident is too late to make sure you’re protected with the right kind of insurance. Give us a call at 518-793-5173, if you have any questions about your auto insurance coverage or to get a free review of your current auto policy.