Speeding and distractions could run you into doe

Published on
November 2, 2022
Health, public safety and emergencies
Parking, roads, traffic and transit
A deer warning sign along a roadway.

You’re driving after dark on a fall evening. The roads are dry and clear, and the star-filled sky is crisp and clear. It’s perfect driving conditions. Still, an unseen danger lurks in the grassy brush alongside the roadway. And in a flash, it springs out in the front of your vehicle. It’s a deer.

Unfortunately, this type of vehicle-deer collision scene is played out every year on Ottawa roadways – in both rural and suburban areas. November is the height of deer-mating season, which results in a greater movement of the animal. That’s why it’s important to take proactive steps when driving to prevent a collision with deer or any other wildlife.

When driving between dusk and dawn:

  • Give yourself more control and reaction time: obey posted speed limits and slow down during rainy, snowy or wet conditions.
  • Stay alert and scan ahead alongside the roadway – looking for any animal or movement
  • Use your high beams, when safe to do so, to look for any reflection from deer or other wildlife
  • Keep your phone out of reach, and avoid all other distractions

Should a deer or other wildlife cross your vehicle’s path:

  • Brake
  • Sound your horn
  • Never swerve, to stay in control

More than half of the vehicle-deer collisions happen around this time of year. So when you’re travelling on dark roadways this fall, reduce your risk of injury by staying focused and reducing your speed. Give yourself time to react.

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