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| Bradshaw & Bryant PLLC

The last study from State Farm Insurance indicated that Minnesota was the 12th most likely state for drivers to hit a deer. This is down from the prior study where Minnesota was 10th nationally. Despite the drop, the number of car/deer collisions still puts Minnesota in the risk category.

November is an especially bad month, with a lot more animals being out on the roads. Nearly one third of the yearly car-deer collisions occur in October and November.

-The Minnesota Department of Traffic Safety’s "Crash Facts 2007" indicated that there were 3,144 vehicle-deer accidents reported with 336 injuries and six fatalities.

– Minnetonka saw 14 collisions last November.

1 in every 98 licensed Minnesota driver will hit a deer this year; in Wisconsin it’s 1 in 97 .

The Duluth News Tribune recently published some helpful suggestions:

Rule 1: Treat every deer as if it’s going to cross in front of you. If you assume a deer feeding on the shoulder is going to hold its position until you have gone by, you’re just an accident waiting to happen.

Rule 2: Drive according to the conditions. If the night is foggy, rainy, or slippery, you might not be able to prevent a collision, but you can minimize the damage if you’re driving slowly enough. Don’t just speed along and hope nothing gets in your way.

Rule 3: Keep your eyes on the road at all times. You may only have a second or two to react to a deer crossing the highway. If you’re not an attentive driver, you can get hurt.

While there is no liability claim for the driver of the car, he or she is covered for Minnesota No Fault Benefits. These benefits are paid in the same manner that they would be paid in any Minnesota motor vehicle collision. Passengers may still have a claim for liability depending on the facts of the collision. It is important that these case be investigated early by an Attorney who does this type of work.

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