Venison on the grille

In the February Car and Driver we get a look at some scary numbers compiled by State Farm, of which the scariest may be this: between 1 July 2011 and 30 June 2012 there were 1,231,710 vehicle/deer collisions. One point two million of them in these 57 states.

On second thought, this might be scarier: more than a third of them took place in just five states. The worst of the lot was West Virginia, where a driver has about a 1-in-40 chance of getting clobbered by Cervidae. (Your best chance of avoiding the pesky hooved rodent is in Hawaii, where the odds are 1:6800. Still, that was 134 wrecks in twelve months.)

Since Robert Stacy McCain is going to ask: 1:115 in Maryland. The magazine reports two collisions involving staffers, one in California (1:940) and one in Michigan (1:72, tied for third worst). It’s 1:195 here in Oklahoma, which did not impress the doe who cut short my 2006 World Tour.


  1. nightfly »

    7 January 2013 · 1:20 pm

    I live not a quarter-mile from a fair-sized county park, and late at night, I always keep an eye out driving past the place. It’s fairly suburbanized all around, but between this location and a nearby golf course, there’s plenty of the critters. A few weeks ago, four of them sprang across the road ahead of my car – far enough, luckily, to stop in time, since I prefer to admire their grace from afar.

    How did New Jersey check in? I’m guessing top-ten at least, since our fair state boasts a great many deer in suburban areas and a great many commuters flying past them at unsafe speeds.

  2. McGehee »

    7 January 2013 · 3:08 pm

    Nearest I ever came to hitting a deer, it was a moose that entered the roadway without stopping or signaling. Since it was winter and the setting was suburban Fairbanks, my attempt to stop was only mostly successful, as was Madam Moose’s attempt to gallop out of my way. Between the two of us we managed to part company without collision.

    Next closest was a whitetail fawn right here(abouts) in Newnan, who was bound and determind to cross the road ahead of me, the laws of physics be damned. Fortunately I saw Bambi in time to avoid hitting him, and he got his bragging rights.

  3. CGHill »

    7 January 2013 · 5:29 pm

    Joisey is mid-pack, with 1:191; New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware all did worse. (DC managed a mere 1:778, but then traffic inside the Beltway is running about 3 mph.)

  4. Those Deadly Assault Cars | Daily Pundit »

    8 January 2013 · 1:30 am

    […] In other words, drivers bagged about one fifth the number of deer that hunters did (based on an annual harvest of about six million) […]

  5. Charles Pergiel »

    8 January 2013 · 10:38 am

    fiftyseven states?

  6. CGHill »

    8 January 2013 · 11:15 am

    Lord O hath said so, and therefore it must be so.

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