Neb. and Kans. See Drop in Odds That Drivers Will Hit A Deer - KHGI-TV/KWNB-TV/KHGI-CD-Grand Island, Kearney, Hastings

Neb. and Kans. See Drop in Odds That Drivers Will Hit A Deer, Tips

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Lincoln – The odds that an individual driver in the United States will crash into a deer during the next year have declined by 4.3-percent.

Using its claims data and state licensed driver counts from the Federal Highway Administration, State Farm calculated the chances of any single American motorist striking a deer over the next 12 months.

They say the chance of hitting a deer is one in 174, compared to 1 in 167 the year before. 

This is good news for Nebraskans as the state boasts a particularly high likelihood and saw a substantial drop.

Among the 41 states where these confrontations are most likely, the decline in likelihood is particularly notable in North Dakota, who saw a drop of over 24-percent, and Nebraska, who saw a drop of 22-percent.

Nebraska ranks 19th on the list, down from 14th place last year. In Nebraska, the chance of a motorist hitting a deer in the coming year is 1 in 131.

The probability of deer to vehicle collisions dropped by 12.6-percent in South Dakota and Michigan had the fourth largest descent of just over 11-percent. Kansas saw a drop of over 11-percent and rounds out the top five.

For the seventh year in a row, deer-vehicle confrontations are most probable in West Virginia. The chances of any single licensed driver in that state hitting a deer between now and a year from now are 1 in 41.

Montana remained second on the likelihood list and Iowa moved up one spot to third.  

"This data is encouraging," said Chris Mullen, Director-Strategic Resources.  "We would like to think the attention we call to this issue each fall has had an impact.  Obviously there are other factors at play as well." 

State Farm's data shows that November, the heart of the deer hunting and mating seasons, is the month during which deer-vehicle encounters are most likely. 

Approximately 18-percent of all such mishaps take place during the 30 days of November. 

Deer-vehicle collisions are three times more likely to occur on a day in November than they are on any day between February 1st and August 31st

October is the second most likely month for a crash involving a deer and a vehicle. December is third.  

Here are tips on how to reduce the odds of a deer-vehicle confrontation:

  • Keep in mind that deer generally travel in herds – if you see one, there is a strong possibility others are nearby.
  • Be aware of posted deer crossing signs.  These are placed in active deer crossing areas.
  • Remember that deer are most active between 6 and 9 p.m.
  • Use high beam headlamps as much as possible at night to illuminate the areas from which deer will enter roadways.
  • If a deer collision seems inevitable, attempting to swerve out of the way could cause you to lose control of your vehicle or place you in the path of an oncoming vehicle.
  • Don't rely on car-mounted deer whistles.  
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