Corinth State Farm Agent Scott Sawyer has shared tips to avoid deer and other animals in the road.
Mississippi is in the top 10 states nationally for drivers hitting deer, according to State Farm.
West Virginia is the top state with a one in 46 chance of having an insurance claim involving a deer. Mississippi was one in 91.
Sawyer shared the following tips to prevent vehicle collisions with animals.
Stay Alert: Pay attention to deer-crossing signs and be cautious in areas near woods or water.
Use High Beams: Flicking high beams on deer may cause them to scurry away.
Don’t Swerve: If crashing into a deer is unavoidable, maintain control of the vehicle and don’t go off the road.
Brake as Necessary: If there are no other drivers behind you, brake hard. But if other motorists are behind you, reduce your speed, honk the horn and warn others by tapping the brakes.
Remember Peak Season: Most crashes with deer happen between October and December.
Remember Meal Time: Watch for animals in the road between dusk and dawn.
Watch for Herds: If you see one deer, there are probably others close by.
Don’t Use a Whistle: There is no scientific evidence that vehicle-mounted deer whistles work.
Wear Seat Belts: Obey speed limits and stay buckled up.
If you hit a deer, Sawyer says to follow these tips:
Move your vehicle to a safe place, turn on your hazard lights and move to the side of the road if possible.
Call the police, and alert authorities if the deer is obstructing the roadway.
Document the incident by taking pictures of the road, surroundings, damage and injuries. If witnesses stop, ask them for their account of the incident and get their phone number.
Stay away from the animal.
Contact your insurance agent.
Don’t assume your car is safe to drive. Look for leaking fluids, broken headlights, tire damage and other problems.