Motorists in three Philadelphia-area counties lead the state in crashes involving deer, according to AAA Mid-Atlantic.
Deer crash claims increased across Pennsylvania by 10.6 percent from 2010 though 2012. Leading the state in such claims is Chester County, followed by Bucks County and Delaware County, according to AAA.
There were 3,362 reportable crashes, or crashes resulting in injury, death or vehicle damage requiring towing, that involved deer in 2012, AAA said, citing a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation report. Eight people were killed in those reportable crashes.
“Motorists need to be extra vigilant no matter what road they travel, but especially those on rural, wooded roads and during commuting times which coincide with high times of deer activity. If a deer-vehicle collision is unavoidable, don't swerve out of your lane or lose control of your vehicle.” said Jenny M. Robinson, manager of public and government affairs for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “Also protect yourself by always wearing a seat belt and staying alert and sober.”
Deer mating season runs October through December, making it more likely motorists will see deer crossing roadways.
Not all crashes involving deer are reportable. But that doesn't mean they can't be costly. AAA Insurance reports the average amount of a Pennsylvania claim is about $2,030 for crashes where a vehicle strikes an animal, with deer involved in 95 percent of such accidents.