Motorists are being urged to keep an extra eye out for deer on roadways as the animals become more active during the fall season.

Corinth Police Chief Ralph Dance said the animals are a serious problem, even in the city, and his officers always respond to several deer-related crashes during the fall.

He said the early morning and late evening are the prime times for deer activity.

“Motorists really need to be vigilant,” he said.

Deer are also social animals and when one is around there will often be another.

Dance said if a driver sees one they should be watchful for others nearby.

“If you see one, you’re probably going to see another,” he said.

The Mississippi Department of Transportation reports there were 4,058 deer-related crashes in the state last year.

“Deer are unpredictable, especially when frightened,” Melinda McGrath, P.E., MDOT Executive Director said. “Drivers should remain vigilant, avoid distractions and wear their seat belt.”

The peak deer season is typically October through January when their movement is at its busiest.

MDOT offers the following tips for motorists.

Don’t veer for deer. If a deer runs in front of a moving car, remain calm and brake firmly. Swerving can cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles, causing an even more serious accident.

Deer are herd animals. Take extra caution for deer lingering around the same area.

Remain vigilant when driving at dawn and dusk. About 20 percent of crashes occur in early morning, while more than half occur between 5 p.m. and midnight.

Always buckle up for safety and drive at a safe speed.

At night use high beams, when no traffic is approaching, to illuminate the eyes of deer near the road. Make sure both headlights and high beams are cleaned and aimed correctly.

Banner Independent Editor

Managing editor of the Daily Corinthian’s sister newspaper, Booneville’s Banner-Independent, Brant Sappington has been a member of the Daily Corinthian family since 2001.

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