Chicago, Illinois Auto Accident Attorney
Representing Clients Injured in Auto Accidents Due to Animals in the Roadway
Drivers must be on the lookout for any number of distractions and potential causes of auto accidents, including animals. Animals, such as deer, squirrels, ducks, dogs, cats, birds, and raccoons, are common causes of animal-related auto accidents.
Animal crossings, especially deer crossings, are a leading cause of automobile collisions in Illinois. In fact, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, there were 17,135 deer-vehicle collisions in 2010 alone. Most deer-auto accidents occur between October and December, during deer’s mating season, and at night when deer, which are nocturnal animals, are actively searching for food.
When you are in an auto collision with an animal, or you are in an auto accident as a result of trying to avoid an animal in the roadway, the Chicago auto accident attorneys at Ankin Law Offices, LLC can advise you of your legal rights and remedies to recover for any injuries or property damages. If you have been in an accident caused by an animal in the roadway, contact our office at (800) 442-6546 to schedule a free consultation with one of our Chicago auto accident attorneys.
Safety Precautions for Avoiding Accidents Due to Animals in the Roadway
Drivers should be aware of the risks animals, including deer, can cause and take appropriate precautions, including:
- Pay attention to animal crossing signs, including deer, moose, and duck crossing signs. Scan down the road and off to each side. Be especially watchful in areas near woods and water. If you see one animal, there are probably several others nearby.
- Be especially vigilant during peak seasons. Though collisions can happen any time of year, fall is peak time for deer-car crashes because it is both hunting and mating seasons, forcing deer to roam outside their normal territory.
- At night, use high-beams when possible to illuminate the road’s edges. If you see an animal, such as a deer up ahead, flick the high-beams on and off multiple times so that the animal might scurry away.
- Be particularly vigilant at dawn and dusk when animals are usually feeding.
- Brake wisely. If you think you have time to avoid hitting the animal, reduce speed, tap the brakes to warn drivers behind you, and sound your horn. If there’s no vehicle close behind you, brake hard.
- If a collision seems inevitable, hold the wheel steady and brake. Do not try to avoid hitting the deer by swerving into oncoming traffic or off the road.
- Obey speed limits and wear seat belts.
- Reduce speed and be prepared to stop quickly on roads where deer may be present, especially areas near streams or rivers or in areas with heavy vegetation.
- Take note of locations where deer have been sighted in the past.
What to Do If You Are in an Auto Collision Caused by an Animal in the Roadway
If you are involved in an auto accident caused by an animal in the roadway, you should contact your local, county or state law enforcement and stay in your car until help arrives. Do not attempt to move a dead or injured deer from the roadway.
You may wish to consult with an experienced Illinois auto accident attorney to determine whether you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and/or property damage. The Chicago auto accident attorneys at Ankin Law Offices have considerable experience representing clients who have suffered injuries or property damages in an auto accident caused by an animal in the roadway. We will evaluate various factors that affect an animal crossing collision, such as whether there was adequate lighting on the roadway, and examine the facts of the collision in order to advise you on how to best proceed with your claim.
If you have suffered injuries or property damage as a result of a roadway animal collision, contact the Chicago auto accident attorneys at Ankin Law Offices at (800) 442-6546 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your rights and remedies.