PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The annual deer versus vehicle survey is out and West Virginia is No. 1 and Pennsylvania ranks fourth.
The survey measures your chances of having an accident involving a deer. In West Virginia, one out of every 52 drivers will have a deer confrontation, while in Pennsylvania the ratio is one deer hit for every 86 drivers.
Of course, there are a lot more drivers in Pennsylvania which once again accounted for more deer killed by vehicles than any other state – more than 101,000 this past year. That’s 23,000 more than Michigan and almost 30,000 more than New York.
Hitting a deer can be costly says Tim Dietz of Troubleshooters in Ross Township.
“You’re going to get a hood, fender, a headlight and it adds up fast,” he said.
State Farm Insurance says the average deer strike claim totals $3,171.
The experts say the most hazardous times are around dusk and dawn and now through Thanksgiving the worst time of year.
Game Commission Officer Dan Puhala says don’t trust deer whistles and remember deer rarely travel alone.
While it might sound cruel, if you cannot stop in time, State Farm Agent Jennifer Johnsen-Nazareth says the company advises its clients to hit the deer rather than swerving.
“You’re going to be safer as a driver,” she said. “The deer will move – a telephone pole, a guardrail will not move.”