Auto accidents involving large wildlife are frequent in many areas of the United States and Canada. Knowing how to react when you see a deer and what to do during and after a collision can reduce injuries, stress, Utah auto body and insurance bills.

 

Don’t speed up or swerve

 

  • Try to stop if you see a large animal in the road.
  • Drivers often swerve into another lane or even off the road in an effort to avoid the animal. The chances of personal injury are increased as well as the cost of vehicle damage.
  • Remember that hitting a wild animal is not the same as hitting another vehicle. A collision with another vehicle to avoid the animal will be blamed on you.

 

When you hit the animal

 

  • After evaluating passengers and yourself for injuries, pull off to the side of the road if you can and use your emergency flashers. Use road flares after dark if you have them.
  • Do not try to approach the animal. It may only appear dead until you startle it. One kick from those powerful legs can kill you.
  • Report the incident to the police
  • Do not give a value of damages to the dispatcher since the amount you mention will most likely be documented and an officer may not be dispatched. You could be directed to a DMV website to file your report instead.
  • Call for roadside assistance while waiting in order to save time.
  • Remember that if the damage is significant, you may not be permitted to drive the vehicle.

 

At Home

 

  • Call your insurance company within 24 hours. Verify if you have comprehensive insurance.
  • If you do, the next steps depend on the insurance company’s policy. Some will send someone to assess the damages. Others may tell you to have the damages assessed elsewhere like a Utah body shop.
  • If you don’t have comprehensive insurance, you will be most likely held responsible for all of the damages and injuries yourself. So be sure to add comprehensive insurance before it’s too late.

 

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