COLUMBUS – Drivers should always stay alert, but that is especially true during November, the leading month for deer-vehicle crashes in Ohio. Last November nearly 3,800 incidents occurred on the state’s roadways.
Governor Mike DeWine, Ohio State Highway Patrol Superintendent Colonel Richard S. Fambro and Ohio Department of Insurance Jillian Froment urge drivers to avoid distractions and use safe driving techniques.
“The most deer-vehicle crashes happen in November,” Governor Mike DeWine said. "And we want to remind Ohioans to drive safely, making sure to scan the road ahead for deer, especially at dawn and dusk.”
“Motorists must always be vigilant and ready to react to any situation,” Colonel Fambro said. “If you see a deer in the roadway, slow down, but do not swerve. If you strike a deer, move to a safe place, turn your hazard lights on and report the accident.”
Deer are most active at dawn and dusk. Drivers should scan the road and shoulders ahead, and use high beams when there is no oncoming traffic. Experts also recommend conducting an insurance review.
“It is essential to remain attentive when driving and avoiding distractions in order to keep you and your family safe,” Froment said. “It is also important to complete an insurance review and make sure you have adequate insurance in the event of an accident.”
The optional comprehensive coverage (also known as “other than collision” coverage) portion of an auto insurance policy often is used to pay for deer-vehicle damage repair. Collision or liability-only policies do not cover the damage. Be certain to photograph or video any damage to support an insurance claim.
A total of 18,200 deer-related crashes occurred last year across the state. The top counties where incidents occurred were Stark (486), Trumbull (428), Richland (426), Hancock (424), Williams (413), Wood (412), Clermont (380), Defiance (369), Lorain (367), and Hamilton (366). Cuyahoga and Franklin Counties experienced 285 and 232 incidents, respectively.