TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI)- The likelihood of colliding with a large animal more than doubles during the months of October, November and December.
According to State Farm, Hoosiers have a one in 145 chance of hitting a deer while driving.
And, Illinois residents have 1 in 204 chance.
In many U.S. States, drivers are all too familiar with deer crossing signs. But, officials are warning you to really understand how close the danger may be.
It can happen at any time of the day.
Pattye Palmer was driving in the broad daylight.
"I've seen them scamper across the road in front of me," Palmer said.
A deer came close to hitting her.
"You have to really pay attention," Palmer said.
Scott McDaniel is the owner of a collision repair center in the Wabash Valley.
"I'd be scared to guess how many, but probably thousands or so," Palmer said.
McDaniel has owned his business for nearly 25 years. He says thousands have come in for repairs due to hitting a deer while driving.
"Just be careful because they are moving and they are out there," McDaniel said.
Indiana State police say the increase during the fall is because this is the time when the climate is changing and deer mating season has begun.
The average cost for deer-vehicle claims has gone up nationwide to $4,179 from $3,995.
Some tips from State Farm to help keep drivers safe include:
- Slow down, particularly at dusk and dawn
- If you see one deer, be prepared for more deer to cross the road
- Pay attention to deer crossing signs
- Always buckle up, every, trip, every time
- Use your high beams to see farther, except when there is oncoming traffic
- Brake if you can, but avoid swerving, which could result in a more severe crash
- Remain focused on the road, scanning for hazards, including animals