Drought, mating season contribute to rise in deer accidents - CBS46 News

Drought, mating season contribute to rise in deer accidents

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Deer Roswell Police Department Deer Roswell Police Department
JOHNS CREEK, GA (CBS46) -

If you plan on hitting the backroads to get to grandma’s house this Thanksgiving holiday, there's a hazard you need to look out for: it's peak deer mating season and accidents are on the rise.

Deer and traffic can be a dangerous and sometimes deadly combination. Deer accidents are becoming a bigger problem in the city of Johns Creek authorities said Wednesday.

“This is definitely the time of year that deer are out moving, they are crossing roads, they are running,” said Captain Chris Byers of the Johns Creek Police Department. “In Johns Creek we have already eclipsed our [accident] number from last year. I believe we had 42 for the year of 2015 and we are at 47 collisions with deer right now,” Byers added.

Byers warns it is still early in the deer mating season and, with Georgia’s extreme drought, deer must also travel more to find water. Byers advised deer are most active at dawn and dusk and that is when drivers need to be the most cautious.

CBS46 was able to spot deer off the side of a busy road as the sun went down near Johns Creek Elementary School.

“Usually when you see one deer on the side of the road there's more that are coming to follow,” Byers advised.

Last week, a driver in Walton County flipped their car swerving to avoid a deer. State Farm Insurance calls Georgia a "high-risk state" for deer accidents and warns November is the month when most of the collisions occur.

“Deer have been known to come through windshields and cause injuries so definitely your speed is going to be the factor of how bad the impact is with the deer,” Byers contended.

Watching your speed on rural roads is the best advice to avoid a collision. Byers also suggests keeping an eye out for deer crossing signs and scanning both sides of the road for deer.

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DROUGHT IN GEORGIA
BY THE NUMBERS

Days without measurable rainfall

40+ days

Acres burned in Georgia

~33,000

Population in drought areas

8.7 million