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top 20 states most likely to hit a deer

Ohio Ranks in Top 20 of States Where Drivers are Most Likely to Hit a Deer

CLEVELAND, OH – Ohio ranks in the top 20 of states where drivers are most likely to hit a deer, according to new data from insurance provider State Farm. And, a growing number of drivers will find a deer in their headlights this fall. Wrecks involving large animals have increased across a majority of the country, according to the data.

Deer collisions are becoming more likely in Ohio. Last year, the chances of an accident with a deer were 1 in 131, the 20th highest odds in the nation. This year, the chances of a collision have jumped to 1 in 126, moving the Buckeye State into the 19th position.

Those accidents cost a lot of money, and that’s likely the reason insurance companies blitz the airwaves with warnings about deer strikes this time of year. The likelihood of colliding with a large animal more than doubles during the months of October, November and December, according to Chris Mullen, State Farm’s director of technology research. The increased risk from October through December is primarily due to peak deer mating season, which starts this month.

“Drivers should be engaged, alert and on the lookout at all times, because you never know when you may need to react to a deer or any other obstacle that may suddenly be in your path,” Mullen said in a statement.

An estimated one in every 164 U.S. drivers filed a claim after striking a deer, elk or moose between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016 — an increase of 3 percent over the previous 12-month period. According to State Farm, the national average cost per claim for 2015-16 was $3,995, down just slightly from $4,135.

These wrecks can sometime prove fatal for drivers and passengers in the vehicle as well. Ohio’s five counties with the highest number of reported deer crashes in 2014 were Stark (512), Richland (510), Lorain (510), Hamilton (433) and Clermont (482). Compared to their 2013 figures, Lorain and Clermont counties showed increases while the other three reported decreases in 2014, according to the Ohio Insurance Institute.

West Virginia led the nation in deer strikes, again, with an average of one claim for every 41 drivers. Hawaii doesn’t see many big-animal strikes, with only one in every 18,955 drivers hitting a deer.

Only 11 states saw a decrease in deer strikes, according to State Farm’s numbers. The biggest increase for the 2015-16 period: Washington, D.C. saw deer strikes jump 50 percent.

Here’s the state rankings for where you’re more likely to find a large animal in your headlights this season:

1. West Virginia, 1 in 41
2. Montana, 1 in 58
3. Pennsylvania, 1 in 67
4. Iowa, 1 in 68
5. South Dakota, 1 in 70
6. Wisconsin, 1 in 77
7. Minnesota, 1 in 80
8. Michigan, 1 in 85
8. Wyoming, 1 in 85
10. Mississippi, 1 in 87
11. North Dakota, 1 in 91
12. South Carolina, 1 in 93
13. Virginia, 1 in 94
14. Arkansas, 1 in 96
15. Kentucky, 1 in 103
16. North Carolina, 1 in 115
17. Missouri, 1 in 117
18. Kansas, 1 in 125
19. Georgia, 1 in 126
19. Ohio, 1 in 126
21. Nebraska, 1 in 132
22. Alabama, 1 in 135
23. Indiana, 1 in 136
24. Maine, 1 in 138
25. Maryland, 1 in 139
26. Idaho, 1 in 147
26. Tennessee, 1 in 147
28. Delaware, 1 in 148
29. Utah, 1 in 150
30. New York, 1 in 161
31. Vermont, 1 in 175
32. Illinois, 1 in 192
33. Oklahoma, 1 in 195
34. New Hampshire, 1 in 234
35. Oregon, 1 in 239
36. New Jersey, 1 in 250
37. Colorado, 1 in 263
38. Texas, 1 in 288
39. Louisiana, 1 in 300
40. Washington, 1 in 307
41. Connecticut, 1 in 313
42. Rhode Island, 1 in 345
43. Alaska, 1 in 468
44. New Mexico, 1 in 475
45. Massachusetts, 1 in 635
46. District of Columbia, 1 in 689
47. Florida, 1 in 903
48. Nevada, 1 in 1,018
49. California, 1 in 1,064
50. Arizona, 1 in 1, 175
51. Hawaii, 1 in 18,955

The study was based on State Farm claims from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, with the company projecting out the total number of claims for each state across the industry.

So what can you do to avoid serious injury during this time of year? State Farm released the following tips to keep drivers safe:

  • 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.
  • Avoid distractions, like devices or eating, which might cause you to miss seeing an animal.
  • Do not rely on products such as deer whistles, which are not proven effective.
  • If riding a motorcycle, always wear protective gear and keep focus on the road ahead.

Includes staff reporting | Image via U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, public domain

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top 20 states most likely to hit a deer:Cleveland, OH – The end of the year is the most dangerous time for deer in the roadway. We've got tips to help you avoid a tragedy.

top 20 states most likely to hit a deer

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top 20 states most likely to hit a deer Ohio Ranks in Top 20 of States Where Drivers are Most Likely to Hit a Deer CLEVELAND, OH - Ohio ranks in the top 20 of states where drivers are most likely to hit a deer, according to new data from insurance...