Fall-winter months increase chances of auto-animal collisions

Animal collisions

EAST TEXAS (KLTV) - Cooler weather means mating season in East Texas for most animals, and that means there is more of a chance to collide with one on the roads.

Statistics released by State Farm insurance shows that the months of October, November, and December have the highest incidents of animal collisions on roadways.

Texas ranks 37th in the nation for the likelihood to have animal collisions, which is up from 38th in 2018.

"Typically wildlife are on the roadways searching for food or they may be in the mating season, chasing another animal," says Texas game warden captain Quint Balkcom.

Texans have a 1-in-157 chance of hitting an animal, which is slightly lower than the national average.

“The times of day you see that are early morning hours, early evening hours, and then deep night hours,” Balkcom says.

Deer are the number one animal hit nation-wide with an estimate of 1.2 million claims in the past year.

And severe damage to cars can be done by hitting a deer or hog.

Aside from the damage it can do to a vehicle, a collision with a large animal like a hog or deer could be life-threatening.

"Public safety is our number one concern. Slowing speed, being aware, could save a lot of damage or potential injury," Quint says.

And Texans have an over 50-percent chance that the animal they will hit is a deer.

"They don't have signs nor do they pay attention to signs. We built the roads through their habitats," says Balkcom.

Using high-beams when able at night on dark roads is advised to see animals well ahead of time.

Texas had nearly 110,000 reported animal collisions from June and July of this year.

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