Hit a deer with my car

It happened when I was driving on the NYS Thruway at 65 on my way down to Lunacon. I just happened to look at the median and saw a deer, and immediately thought, “that thing looks like he’s going to try to cross the road.” Hit the brakes to slow down.

Sure enough, he went into the left lane (I was in the right). I kept braking, hoping it might stay in the left lane, but, at the last moment, when I was down to about 15 mph, he darted into my lane and crashed onto my bumper and hood.

I pulled to the side. He ran off. I didn’t pay any attention to him, though I later saw him lying on the grass on the side of the road.

The left front quarter panel was cracked (this is a Saturn, with plastic sides) and was detached from the bumper. There were also two cracks in the driver’s door; I think they were caused by his hoofs.

The woman behind us stopped and said she appreciated the fact we didn’t swerve. I guess she was in the left lane and I might have swerved into her.

The engine seemed fine, so we drove to the next rest stop and bought some duct tape to keep things from cracking any more. We actually completed the trip without other incident (though Mrs. Chuck was worried things might fall apart).

We got the insurance adjuster to look at it today. Now we have to figure out how to fix things.

good you are ok.

good you didn’t swerve. often the damage is done to a person loosing control of their car in the swerving and not hitting the animal; that damage to people and car are worse than the animal impact.

Not only that but if you swerve to miss an animal and run into a tree or a ditch, the claim would apply to the collision coverage on your car insurance - and it would be charged against you as an at fault accident. Which can lead to an increase in premium at renewal time.

Hitting an animal, on the other hand, is charged to your comprehensive coverage which covers unavoidable, ‘act of God’ type mishaps and probably won’t count against you.

nice that you are good

you are lucky that you and your passengers are ok… be glad for that, and let the insurance handle the rest.

Honestly, to see a deer going above 50 on any road is scary. They can not only do major damage to your car, but can cause multiple accidents (by a driver swerving, etc.)

Glad everything worked out for all involved. Except the deer, of course. Dumbest animal on the planet. I think they actually try to hit your car sometimes. Like a suicide. I actually STOPPED on a road when a deer jumped out in front of me and ran to the other side of the road. When he didn’t get hit (everyone was stopped, watching what he would do next), he turned and ran right into my fender and front bumper. Thanks for that, Bambi!

I pulled to the side. He ran off. I didn’t pay any attention to him, though I later saw him lying on the grass on the side of the road.


Does it make me crazy that I would have at least called someone about the injured deer?

Nope not crazy at all. Animal control had to come out and shoot a deer my buddy hit because it was suffering with two broken legs.

It’s inhumane not to call the local animal services or police. (Police will put animals out of their misery too).

I’d always heard that when an impact with a deer is unavoidable that you should speed up instead of braking, since breaking will lower the nose of your car and make it more likely for the animal to come through your windshield.

When I was a kid I was riding on my skateboard on the sidewalk and a deer came tear assing from between two houses and almost ran me down. It then proceeded to jump through a picture window of another house, where it went absolutely beserk and completely trashed the family room of my friends house with panicked running and bleeding all over. The owner of the house borrowed another neighbor’s shotgun and put it down. Total cost was over $10k of damage (this was the early 80’s and the place was trashed) to the house and an expensive ticket from the cops for the illegal discharge of a firearm within city limits. :rolleyes:

Anyway, deer are batshit stupid crazy animals.

I’m glad you had time to slow down. Sorry about your car.

Poor dumb deer. :frowning:

YMMV on this. Had a situation where a dying deer, after being hit by a car, dragged itself into my business’ parking lot. A cop responded to the call, but explained that he was not allowed to discharge his weapon for an injured deer. The Pennsylvania Game Commission was called. They offered to haul away the body, but it would be at least three days wait. If the deer were still alive when they came, they would kill it.:rolleyes:

Eventually, I drove home and got my handgun. I shot the deer and a friend helped me get it into my dumpster.

Good to hear that you’re OK, RealityChuck. Your story sounds very similar to mine (complete with the thought of “that deer’s going to try to cross the road”), except that I’d only been able to slow down to about 55 (from 75) when I hit it. I was very lucky that it hit the “A-pillar” on the passenger side, which threw it off the car, or it would have wound up coming right through the windshield. A state trooper examined the car, decided that there was no mechanical damage, and cleared me to drive the car the remaining 100 or so miles to home (I, too, wound up using duct tape to keep the windshield together).

This is true. It probably depends on your jurisdiction.

I assumed he was dead. He wasn’t showing any movement.

Here’s one we almost hit. A wee bit slower and we’ve have arrived at the same point in space/time, I suspect.

And my son on his first night-time solo outing…


He told mom, but not me, thinking his excited utterance would get him a thumpin or somethin!

Glad to hear you’re okay.

If it’s a living creature, hit the brakes. Turn to avoid collision only if a) you are traveling at a slow enough rate of speed that you can maintain control of the vehicle AND b) you are aware of the position of every other vehicle on the road and can turn safely. If either condition is missing, do not turn the vehicle. ‘Swerve’ to me always implies a lack of foresight.

This is remembered verbatim from both defensive driving courses and motorcycle safety courses.

I think speeding up for a deer is not a good idea, and I would like a reference to a safety manual that says that. Not only are they tall enough that they are likely to come through your windshield in any case, they tend to leap when they’re in a hurry. Moose - forget about it. They’re coming through the windshield. Hit the brakes and maintain control. Lie across the front seat before impact.

Just the same I’d like to hear the deer’s version of the story! “Well I was just minding my own business taking a lovely stroll when this crazy driver came out of nowhere …WHAM! … yeah I must admit that I froze a bit when I saw those headlights, but wouldn’t you under the circumstances!?” :stuck_out_tongue:

I have never run into a deer (knock on wood) but I had a deer run into me. Put a nice size dent on the left front quarter panel of my Metro.

Mythbusters did a show on this and found it wasn’t true. At any reasonable speed, the deer is going to hit the same general area and more speed just results in more damage.

Mr. Surrounded and I lived an a thick wooded area for years. We never even came close to hitting a deer although we saw them all the time beside the roadway.

It wasn’t until we came off the mountain to drive across the desert that we hit a deer. We could see for miles in every direction, but the damn thing approached the road behind a single highway sign.

Go figure…

I had a little Honda CRX in the 90s and I hit a deer with it. It was undrivable. They fixed it, but it was never right after that.

I was entertained that the state policeman that showed up wanted to go find the deer and harvest the meat.