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Love-Smitten Deer Are Extra Trouble For Motorists

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With fall arriving, the days shorten, the air turns cooler and deer become more active.

The last fact leads to an uptick in vehicle-deer crashes and a spokesperson says motorists need to be extra careful.

The DOT's Rob Miller says keep safety in mind...

"...We're entering that fall rut period when deer become especially active. What motorists can do to protect themselves, minimize the chances of hitting a deer, the key things are just to buckle up and watch your speed...."

Miller says the deer are especially active just before dawn and at dusk. He says if a crash with a deer is unavoidable, there are some things to do...

"...You want to brake firmly and stay in your lane. Avoid any sudden swerving because that will result in the loss of vehicle control and a much more serious crash. If you hit a deer, you want to get the vehicle off the road and tell law enforcement about your specific location..."

Miller says stay in your vehicle after the crash as you could get hit by another vehicle if you wander out.

Miller says last year, more than 20,000 vehicle-deer crashes were reported. Of those crashes, 550 motorists were injured and four died. He says motorcyclists are especially vulnerable. All four of the fatalities from crashes with deer involved motorcyclists.

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