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Virginia roads dangerous for deer, drivers

@richmondoutside
October 29, 2012 8:59am

Virginia has cracked the top 10 states where people are most likely to have a deer/vehicle collision. We were 12th last year (2010-2011) and now we’re No. 10. But we’re not nearly as likely to plow a whitetail as our neighbor to the west.

For the sixth year in a row, West Virginia tops the list of states where an individual driver is most likely to run into a deer. Using its claims data and state licensed driver counts from the Federal Highway Administration, State Farm, calculates the chances of a West Virginia motorist striking a deer over the next 12 months at 1 in 40, compared with 1 in 48 the year before.

Considering Virginia had 5,402,347 licensed drivers in 2010 and there were 52,369 deer/vehicle collisions on Virginia roads in 2011-2012, State Farm estimates Virginians have a 1 in 103.2 chance of hitting a deer in 2012-2013

South Dakota moved from third to second on the list. The likelihood of a licensed driver in that state hitting a deer within the next year is 1 in 68. Iowa (1 in 71.9) drops from second to third. Michigan (1 in 72.4) is a close fourth jumping one position from fifth. Pennsylvania (1 in 76) drops one spot to fifth. In each of the top five states the rate of deer-related collisions per driver went up from a year ago.

The state in which deer-vehicle mishaps are least likely is still Hawaii (1 in 6,801). The odds of a driver in Hawaii colliding with a deer between now and 12 months from now are approximately equal to the odds that any one person will be struck by lightning during his or her lifetime.

 


About Andy Thompson

I was the Outdoors Columnist at the Times-Dispatch from 2007 to 2013, writing twice a week about mountain biking, fishing, hunting, paddling and much more. I live a 1/4 mile from the James River, close enough to see bald eagles soaring over my house on their way to find a meal. Pretty cool, eh?


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