A recent study released by State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. found that drivers in West Virginia are more likely to hit a deer than any other drivers in the nation. For the fourth straight year, the study found that motorists in West Virginia had the highest rate of deer-vehicle accidents in the nation, with the state total at 68,561 for the last two years.
One in every 42 drivers in West Virginia will likely hit a deer in the next year, says State Farm. The company believes that expanding city limits and new roads are to blame for many of these car-animal encounters. More than 80 percent of the state is made up of forestland, and many of the highways in West Virginia cut winding paths straight through the natural habitats of deer.
On average, State Farm reports that deer accident claims cost $3,103, although some West Virginia body shops report repairs costing as much as $14,000. Many of these accidents occur in the fall, as mating season picks up and more deer are traveling across busy roads. The busiest month for accidents is typically November, the peak of mating season. Insurance companies warn drivers to constantly check their blind spots, as most car-deer collisions happen when the deer runs into a driver’s blind spot.
Multi-car crashes due to deer collisions can also be problematic in West Virginia. When drivers swerve to avoid deer, they often crash into other cars on the road. If you’ve been involved in this type of accident, contact an auto accident lawyer to recover damages for your injuries.