To Swerve or Not to Swerve
Animal related insurance claims
Florida is known for its abundant wildlife population. Green space surrounds many of our highways, increasing the chances of an animal-auto collision.
“When driving at night, it is almost impossible to avoid a collision once an animal steps or jumps onto the roadway,” observes Ellsworth Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s leading independent auto insurance agency.
The U.S. Department of Transportation claims an estimated one to two million collisions between a car and large animal occur every year.
A recent study from the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB), analyzes the number of animal-related insurance losses for the years 2014-2017. All animal-related claims went up 6 percent over the four-year period.
The most common animals involved in auto collisions include: deer, racoon, dog, turkey, coyote with deer being the most frequent victim. Additional animals often struck by cars in Florida include the alligator, Florida panther, black bear and birds.
“If animal related accidents are a concern for you or you frequently travel near wooded areas, you might want to check out comprehensive coverage through your car insurance policy,” recommends Buck, Vice President of GreatFlorida Insurance, Florida’s largest independent auto insurance agency.
Consider these wildlife-auto collision statistics from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
A collision with some form of wildlife occurs on average every 39 minutes.
The average repair cost of a car-deer collision is $2,8000.
Approximately 200 motorists die every year in car-wildlife collisions.
1 out of every 17 car collisions involve wandering wildlife.
89% of all wildlife collisions occur on roads with 2 lanes.
84% of all wildlife collisions occur in good weather on dry roads.
If you unexpectedly come upon an animal in the road while driving, experts advise not swerving. Consequences could be more severe if you hit an oncoming vehicle. It is recommended to hit your brakes, honk the horn and duck low behind the dashboard.