Ottawa has the most wildlife/vehicle collisions in Ontario.
Vast rural areas, combined with plenty of green space and wooded areas in urban centres, make Ottawa an ideal locale for the occurrence of vehicle/wildlife collisions. As well, the upsurge of the deer population in Ottawa and most of Ontario has compounded this situation.
In fact, 1,000 wildlife/vehicle collisions on Ottawa’s roadways are reported each year – more than any other area in Ontario.
The risk of wildlife crossing the path of vehicles exists throughout the year, but the risk is much greater in the fall – especially between dusk and dawn.
Wildlife/Vehicle Collision Prevention: be alert, reduce speed, stay in control
- Scan, side-to-side, the roadway and its shoulders
- Use your high beams where possible
- Look out for light reflection from an animal’s eyes
- Take notice of yellow wildlife warning signs
Reduce your speed
- This increases your time to safely react
- This decreases the distance to stop
- This decreases the possibility or severity of personal injury, should a collision be unavoidable
If wildlife crosses your path, stay in control
- Sound your horn
- Never swerve suddenly
If you lose control, you can suffer a far greater consequence – such as a head-on collision with another vehicle.
Your best defence is slowing down. So, remember, Speeding Costs You… Deerly!
Thank you to our community partners for helping to make the Speeding Costs You Deerly campaign possible:
Speeding Costs You Deerly: Award-winning campaign
An extensive communications campaign was undertaken in the fall of 2006 to increase awareness among drivers about the high incidence of deer-vehicle collisions. Drivers were educated about the importance of reducing speed, being alert, staying in control and understanding deer traffic patterns as ways to reduce the number of collisions.
Once known as the deer-vehicle collision capital of Ontario, Ottawa’s Speeding Costs You Deerly campaign has been a resounding success. Since 2006, deer-vehicle collisions have decreased by an amazing 38 per cent, resulting in an estimated social cost savings of $1.1 million.
Wins MTO Award
The Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) recently recognized the Integrated Road Safety Program for its Speeding Costs You Deerly initiative. The program won the 2006 Road Safety Achievement Award in the category ‘Road Safety Achievement of the Year’. The award winning program committee included members from Ottawa Police, the City’s rural health team and Public Works and Services, community residents, MTO, OPP, CAA and Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters.
Wins Environmental Award
The Ottawa-Carleton Wildlife Centre presented the City of Ottawa with a special Environmental Award for its Speeding Costs You Deerly campaign. The Centre elected to give this award, only the second award given in its 22-year history, because the campaign’s objective of prevention and education is at the heart of the Centre’s mission in establishing a better understanding and appreciation for wildlife while mitigating the impact of development and human encroachment into wildlife habitat.