As we head into the month of November and Thanksgiving fast approaching this story caught my eye. A truck driver driving on 1-75 flew into the path of a turkey. The turkey did not survive, the truck driver suffered minor injuries. This brings to mind, the unexpected dangers that drivers can encounter on rural roads. Just last week, a deer caused a fatal crash involving a van and a semi trucker. Those passengers were not so lucky. At least six members of a Chicago family died from the catastrophic injuries they suffered as a result of the fatal encounter with a deer.
This may be a good time to remind drivers of some simple safety precautions to take while driving on rural roads. Many families will be heading to the roads to travel for Thanksgiving. According to State Farm Insurance the incidence of car and deer crashes is highest in the month of November. More fatal car accidents occur during the fall. This made me think. Deer tend to be most active during dawn and dusk hours. You are most likely to see a deer at these times of day. During the deer breeding season which is October until late December, deer are on the move and active. Deer-car collisions are the highest during these months. Deer rarely travel alone. If you see one, another may not be far away.
How can we as drivers prevent an accident with a deer or turkey that has suddenly come across our path? Think fast, what you do in this split second many save your life. Beware of areas that have a large deer population. Look for the deer crossing sign's, these can alert you to these areas of dense deer population. When entering this area, be alert and reduce your speed. This will give you a greater reaction time, should you encounter an animal. As with any car travel, buckle up. Seat belts have been proven to be the most effective safety precaution a driver can take. If possible, use your high beams to increase your area of visibility. If you encounter a deer stopped on the road. Slow down and flash your lights. Or you can honk your horn. Both of these techniques have been shown to cause the deer to move, if frozen in the road.
If you do have a collision with a deer, remain calm. Call for emergency services, if anyone is injured. As a Chicago injury and accident lawyer, I know that this can be a frightening experience. Remaining calm and thinking fast will improve your odds of avoiding a collision. Always, remember the number one safety device that saves lives, is the seatbelt. As with any collision whether it's with another automobile or an animal on the road, your injuries could be severe. If you are involved in this type of collision and have suffered an injury it is best to consult with an experienced injury attorney.
Buckle up, it has been proven to save lives.