OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 19, 2012) - Along with cooler weather and beautiful foliage, autumn brings with it active wildlife and, unfortunately, an increase in the amount of vehicle collisions with animals. With the months of October, November and December being peak times for risk of a collision involving a wild animal, CAA North & East Ontario (CAANEO) is reminding motorists to exercise caution and be vigilant of wildlife near roadways.
"Animal reactions are unpredictable, which is why our Club is urging motorists throughout North and East Ontario to take care and reduce their speed if they do encounter an animal on or beside a roadway," said Tim Georgeoff, President and CEO of CAANEO.
According to the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, 13,954 collisions involving wildlife were reported throughout the province in 2007, though many more go unreported every year.
As fall is the migration season for many animals, there is a higher chance of active wildlife darting out suddenly onto roadways. CAANEO reminds motorists that the best way to avoid a wildlife collision is to reduce your speed if you see an animal on or near a roadway. Reducing your speed will give you additional time to safely respond to the situation, as you should never assume an animal will move out of your way.
Other tips to keep in mind this season include:
- Constantly scan the roadway and its shoulders;
- Use high beams when possible and watch for the glowing eyes of animals;
- Brake firmly if you see an animal crossing or standing on the road;
- Never swerve your vehicle suddenly to avoid an animal as this could cause you to lose control and head into oncoming traffic;
- Wildlife often travel in groups - if you see one, others may follow;
- If possible, avoid driving at dusk and dawn, which is when the majority of wildlife collisions occur.
For more than 100 years, the Canadian Automobile Association has provided travel, Emergency Road Services, insurance, and advocacy for its Members. Visit caaneo.ca.