The Reflection

Gull Lake High School's Online News Source

Deer vs. Vehicle: Impact of crashes on drivers

According to the State of Michigan are nearly 50,000 reported vehicle-deer crashes each year in Michigan one of which being, Tammy Sanders. In 2002 Sanders said she experienced her first and hopefully only deer crash while taking her son to a friend’s house. 

Deer wandering close to a road, this is how most deer crashes arise

It happened late at night like most deer accidents, after pulling out of her subdivision and going up a hill. According to the Insurance Institute for highway safety, deer are very active during the night and most deer accidents occur from 6 to 9 p.m. around dawn as was the case with Sanders.

¨All of a sudden a deer jumped straight in front of my truck, and I couldn’t stop so I hit right into it,¨ she said. 

Sanders said her initial thoughts when hitting the animal was questioning what just hit her and panicked for how the moments after would play out.  Sanders  explained there was absolutely no way of seeing this deer, and it came out of nowhere. 

Since Sanders’s car she was driving a large vehicle, she couldn’t stop in time or swerve around the deer, so she said the logical choice was to hit the deer.  Many other deer accidents play out just like Sanders’, causing critical damage to the car depending on its size.

Similar to many people’s experience, in Sander’s case deer was killed, but fortunately for her, the car and both passengers survived. According to the Insurance Information Institute, deers cause 200 deaths per year from crashes on urban roads close to forests. 

While Sander’s big suburban did not sustain much damage other than to the front and a cracked windshield, the damage and cost to repair the car was minimal, and the car was still usable. However, that it not the case for many drivers. Research from the Insurance Journal says that 4 billion dollars is spent on deer crashes each year just to repair damage done.  

Ways to avoid collision is to be more aware driving at night and close to dawn on rural roads. One death from deer crashes is enough and could possibly be avoided by slowing the vehicle down and keeping eyes watching for movement on the side of the road. Always keep eyes peeled for animals crossing the road. Driving a car is very dangerous as is, be aware of animals and environment to avoid one of the hazards on the road faced everyday. 

Author Profile

Camrynn Sanders
Hi, my name is Camrynn Sanders, and I am a sophomore at Gull Lake High School. I enjoy spending my time outdoors adventuring and dancing at a nearby studio. I also like to paint and write stories, which is a huge role in why I joined newspaper. I enjoy writing about nature and the beautiful memoirs the Earth holds. I have three older siblings who also attended Gull Lake and graduated as I also plan to do.

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