Deer aren’t just seen as beautiful creatures back home where I’m from. They are also seen as a driving nuisance. Tons of people hit deer while driving, and, according to the Highway Loss Data Institute, November is the most deadly for the animals, with 3 times as many accidents. The HLDI report says that the reason for this is that “Urban sprawl means suburbia and deer habitat intersect in many parts of the country. If you’re driving in areas where deer are prevalent, the caution flag is out, especially in November.”

Last year, 223 people died from animal collisions, with Texas, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania leading the way. There are ways to prevent this from happening. First, drive the speed limit or slightly lower. It is extremely hard to see in rural areas at night, and you never know when a deer or other animal will decide to cross the road. Second, wear your seat belts. The majority of the human deaths that resulted from animal collisions were due those people not having their seat belts on. Come on people, we’ve all heard the lectures from school. Not wearing your seat belt really is ridiculously stupid. Third, warn the animals that you are approaching. Purchase the Animal Lover Car Whistle, which emits a high-pitched whistle that warns animals you are near. Lastly, if you do happen to hit an animal, check to see if it is alive. The ASPCA has instructions for what to do in this situation.

Please always be on the lookout while driving to prevent the deaths of the many animals who are killed each year on the road, and to protect yourself and your family.