Drivers Warned of Deer, Moose Accidents at Dusk

October 22, 2001

As the days become shorter with the approach of winter, New Hampshire’s deer and moose population is on the move. Unfortunately this causes a dramatic rise in accidents with motorists, especially during the twilight hours.

A Finnish study, which appeared in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, cited by the HealthScoutNews, revealed that the chances of colliding with a deer rose 30 times after sunset as opposed to the chances in daylight, and that the chances of running into a moose were approximately 60 times greater .

In 1999, 231 people were killed in 213 accidents involving animals in the U.S. While in Europe the study indicates there are approximately 500,000 collisions with deer annually, resulting in over 300 deaths, 30,000 injuries and extensive property damage. Cars who collide with a moose, or large deer, are frequently a total loss.

The report urges drivers to take extra precautions at dusk and at night when driving on rural roads. It also says that the police should be called and a report filed on any accidents involving animals to make sure that the motorist’s insurance company has adequate information when a claim for damages is filed.

NH authorities are well aware of the problem, and have posted special warning signs indicating “Brake for Moose: It Could Save Your Life.” The animals often weigh 1000 pounds or more, and are especially hard to see at night due to their dark coloration, and, according to the report, their eyes don’t reflect light. In addition an accident involving a moose often results in the animal crashing on to the hood of an automobile and through the windshield,as they are much larger and taller than a deer.

Was this article valuable?

Here are more articles you may enjoy.