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Deer-vehicle accident season is at its peak

BISMARCK — Motorists are reminded to watch for deer along roadways this time of year because juvenile animals are dispersing from their home ranges.

October through early December is the peak period for deer-vehicle accidents, according to the North Dakota Department of Game & Fish department..

Motorists are advised to slow down and exercise caution at dawn and dusk and also after dark as most deer-vehicle accidents occur primarily at that time when deer are most often moving around.

Motorists should be aware of warning signs signaling deer are in the area. If a driver sees one deer cross the road, look for a second or third deer to follow. Also, pay attention on roadways posted with deer crossing caution signs.

Deer-vehicle accidents are at times unavoidable. If an accident does happen, law enforcement authorities do not have to be notified if only the vehicle is damaged. However, if the accident involves personal injury or other property damage, then it must be reported.

Also motorists are urged to not swerve or take the ditch to avoid hitting a deer. Try to brake the vehicle as much as possible and stay on the roadway but don’t lose control or slam into something else to miss the deer. A motorist  risks less injury by hitting the deer, said the department..

In addition, a permit is still required to take parts or the whole carcass of a road-killed deer. Permits are free and available from game wardens and local law enforcement offices.