The North Tonawanda Police Department is advising motorists to be mindful of deer this fall season.
According to police the highest incidence of deer-vehicle collisions occurs in November.
This corresponds to the peak of the annual deer breeding cycle when deer are more active and less cautious in their movements.
It is estimated that there are more than 70,000 deer-vehicle collisions in New York each year.
Police recommend taking the following precautions while driving to minimize chances of hitting a deer:
- Use extreme caution when driving at dawn or dusk, especially during fall months through December and when visibility is poor.
- Slow down when approaching deer standing near the roadside, as they may bolt at the last minute when a car comes closer, often running into the road.
- Deer often travel in groups, so if a deer is spotted crossing the road, be alert for others that may follow.
- Be alert and use caution when traveling through deer crossing areas which are usually marked with road signs.
- If a deer does run in front of the vehicle, it is advised to brake firmly but do not swerve. Swerving can cause a vehicle-vehicle collision or cause the vehicle to hit a fixed object such as a tree or pole.