Eastman Region worst in province for deer-vehicle collisions: Manitoba Public Insurance releases Top 5 list

The Eastman Region ─ which includes communities Steinbach, Lac du Bonnet, Anola, Birds Hill Park area and Falcon Lake ─ is the province’s No. 1 area for vehicle-deer collisions. There are about 1,600 collisions yearly within this region, based on statistics collected by Manitoba Public Insurance from 2010 to 2014.

Motorists are encouraged to exercise extra care and caution during October and November ─ the two worst months for deer-vehicle collisions.

Rounding out the province’s Top 5 deer/vehicle collision regions:

  • Eastman Region, 1,600 yearly collisions
  • Westman, 1,450 yearly collisions
  • Interlake, 1,100 yearly collisions
  • City of Winnipeg, 600 yearly collisions
  • Pembina Valley, 600 yearly collisions

“A collision between a vehicle and an animal can result in a very serious outcome,” said Ward Keith, vice-president, Business Development & Communications and chief product officer, Manitoba Public Insurance. “Last year, 300 Manitobans were injured in wildlife-related collisions. Over the last 10 years, eight people in Manitoba have been killed in crashes caused by an animal on a road.”

Tips to help keep you safe:

  • Slow down when you see wildlife crossing signs.
  • Animals are normally more active at dawn, dusk and at night.
  • Watch for deer brush and tall grass grow near the road.
  • Scan the roadside for animals — get your passengers to help.
  • Watch for the reflection of headlights in the eyes of a deer, or a dark silhouette.
  • Do not swerve if an animal does cross in front of your vehicle ─ brake firmly to reduce the impact between an animal and your vehicle.

Overall, Manitobans are involved in about 11,000 vehicle/wildlife collisions yearly. Collisions are most common during September to December. This four-month period accounts for almost half (46 per cent) of the annual wildlife-related collisions.

Motorists are also reminded that it is now illegal to place food and other wildlife attractants along provincial roads and highways in Manitoba. Doing so can attract wildlife to the roadside unnecessarily and create dangerous hazards for passing motorists.

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