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Fremont Insurance Reminds Motorists of the Dangers of Vehicle-Deer Collisions as Hunting Season Approaches

deer (select to view enlarged photo)

FREMONT, MI--Oct. 8, 2013: As deer hunting season approaches in Michigan, Fremont Insurance would like to remind drivers of the increased risk of a deer-car collision that accompanies this annual outdoor tradition. According to the Insurance Institute of Michigan, there were 48,918 reported car-deer crashes in the state in 2012. That translates into one car-deer crash every nine minutes. Last year, 8 motorists lost their lives in vehicle-deer crashes in Michigan, while another 1,329 persons were injured. In Michigan alone, vehicle-deer crashes cost $130 million per year.

"Deer hunting season in Michigan is among our most widely observed outdoor traditions," said Kurt Dettmer, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for Fremont Insurance. "Deer are an important resource for the state. At the same time, between expanding populations and the encroachment of humans into the deer's natural habitat, they've become a serious safety hazard for Michigan drivers."

Fremont Insurance regularly shares tips and recommendations with its customers throughout the year to help homeowners avoid a wide variety of potentially devastating losses. According to the Company, there are several steps you can take to put the odds back in your favor when it comes to avoiding deer collisions:

Stay aware, awake, and sober Car-deer crashes occur all year, but are more likely during spring and fall, and at dusk and dawn so drivers should take extra precautions during these times Pay attention to deer crossing and speed limit signs. Deer are creatures of habit and signs are installed at known deer crossing areas to alert you Be aware that deer are herd animals, and frequently travel single file. If you see one whitetail, watch for others ALWAYS wear a safety belt. It is your best defense against injury in any roadway crash Multiple independent studies have found that "Deer whistles" are not effective at warding off deer so even if you have one, remain vigilant

In the event that a crash is unavoidable, Fremont Insurance offers this advice to drivers:

Don't swerve. Brake firmly, stay in your lane, hold onto the steering wheel, and bring your vehicle to a controlled stop Pull off the road. Turn on your emergency flashers and be cautious of other traffic if you leave your vehicle Don't try to remove a deer from a roadway unless you are convinced it is dead. A wounded deer can cause serious injuries Report the crash to the nearest police and your insurance agent.