Hamilton, Clermont Counties Are 'Hotspots' For Deer-Vehicle Collisions
More than 900 deer strikes were reported to law enforcement in Clermont and Hamilton counties last year, putting the two on the state's list of collision hotspots.
Hamilton County recorded 434 deer strikes in 2014. Clermont County reported 481.
Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) spokesman Matt Bruning explains the numbers are high "because of the terrain and the topography. There's a lot of wooded area right next to suburban and urban area and so where you get that mix of wildlife and people, that's where you're going to find those higher numbers of deer crashes."
In fact, ODOT says the roughly two mile stretch of State Route 32 in Clermont County between Bach Buxton Road and Main Street is one of the top deer strike spots in the state.
“Fewer daylight hours, the increased movement of deer due to mating season, along with hunting season, can mean a greater risk of collisions between deer and vehicles,” said ODOT Director Jerry Wray in a statement.
If you hit a deer, Bruning says it's important to alert authorities even if your vehicle isn't damaged.
In Ohio, drivers are allowed to claim deer carcasses. Clermont County also has a waiting list of people, as does the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
ODOT offers these driving tips to help avoid deer collisions:
- Watch for deer crossing signs and drive with extreme caution, especially in the posted areas.
- If you see a deer near the road, expect that others will follow.
- Watch for deer near roadways, especially at dawn and after sunset. About 20 percent of these crashes occur in early morning, while over half occur between 5 p.m. and midnight.
- After dark, use high-beams when there isn’t oncoming traffic. These will illuminate the deer eyes allowing more time to react.
- Always wear safety belts and drive at safe, sensible speeds for road conditions.