Flower Mound has recently seen an increase in deer/vehicle collisions, with two accidents reported in October and two more so far in November.
Due to the increase in accidents, the Flower Mound Police Department is offering motorists tips that may help to decrease the chances of being involved in an unexpected meeting with a dashing deer.
The cooler fall weather means an increase in deer activity. It is important drivers keep a close watch for any animals that wander onto the highway. Collisions with deer are more frequent during their migration and mating season in October, November, and December. Growing deer populations are producing increasingly hazardous conditions for motorists and deer.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car accidents with deer are responsible for approximately 1.5 million car accidents nationwide. These accidents cause $1 billion in property damage, 10,000 personal injuries, and 150 human fatalities. Texas is ranked 9th in the country for traffic accidents involving deer.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, more than 7,000 animal-related accidents happened on Texas highways in 2009. Many of them involved deer and 25 of those were fatal.
TxDOT suggests the following tips to avoid hitting a deer:
• Drive carefully in areas known to have high deer populations. Places where roads divide agricultural fields from forestland are particularly dangerous.
• If you see a deer, slow down. Others are probably nearby.
• Use high-beam headlights when there is no oncoming traffic. The high beams will reflect off deer’s eyes and warn you of their presence.
• If a deer is in your lane, brake firmly but stay in the lane. The most serious crashes occur when drivers swerve.
• Do not rely on deer whistles, deer fences, or reflectors to deter deer.
• Wear seat belts.
• If your car strikes a deer, do not touch the animal. If the deer is blocking the highway, call the police.