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AAA: Hunting season opens - motorists should beware


Fri, Nov 18th 2022 10:30 am

By AAA of Western and Central New York

Opening day of regular season deer hunting is Nov. 19 in most areas of Western and Central New York. Hunting will stir the deer population, which is already active due to mating season. AAA is warning motorists to buckle up, be extra cautious on the roads, and scan for deer and other animals.

AAA analyzed New York crash data and found that October, November and December are by far the peak months for animal crashes, notably deer, in the Empire State. November is typically the most active month of all, since it is the height of deer mating season.

There were 34,064 animal-related crashes statewide in 2021 – up slightly from 2020 – that’s equivalent to one animal-related crash every 16 minutes. Of the 34,064 crashes, there were 1,515 injury animal-related crashes and five fatal crashes.

Here are the top 10 counties in New York for animal crashes in 2021:

  • Suffolk (1,367)
  • Monroe (1,358)
  • Orange (1,356)
  • Oneida (1,269)
  • St. Lawrence (1,260)
  • Jefferson (1,217)
  • Ontario (1,196)
  • Erie (1,008)
  • Onondaga (972)
  • Livingston (929)

Motorists should be especially vigilant at sunrise and sunset. Deer crashes often occur outside daylight hours. Crashes are most common in the evening.

AAA offers the following tips for avoiding or mitigating deer crashes:

√ Scan the shoulders of the road in front of you. Deer may dash out from the shoulder or wooded areas adjacent to the road. They often travel in herds.

√ Follow the speed limit. Lower speed will give you more time to respond to unexpected wildlife movements.

√ If a collision is unavoidable, apply the brakes firmly and remain in your lane. Swerving sharply to avoid an animal can often cause a more serious crash.

For more insurance tips or to ensure that you are covered in case of a crash, simply go to www.AAA.com/Insurance.

As upstate New York’s largest member services organization, AAA Western and Central New York provides more than 887,000 members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1900, AAA has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. Visit AAA at www.AAA.com.

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