Any experienced rider knows there are many dangers on the road. One of the most challenging can be avoiding collisions with deer. While you can’t control how deer behave you can take steps to protect yourself.
Here are some of the top ways to avoid motorcycle deer accidents.
- Be careful in the early morning and night hours, this is the most active time for deer.
- Use your headlights to see the deer better as the light reflects in the deer’s eyes
- If you see a deer in the distance, reduce your speed and honk your horn to startle the deer away. However, be prepared for them to run in any direction, including into your path.
- Practice, practice, practice. Practice is the best way to make sure you can brake and swerve when you need to. Do be sure to practice breaking hard and then releasing your brakes and swerving. You never know when these techniques will be required.
- Always, always wear your helmet and other safety gear. The vast majority of injuries in a motorcycle deer accident occurred because drivers were not wearing their safety gear.
- Remember, deer travel together. So always look for other deer after you see one, especially if they have just crossed the street. When you notice a deer near your path, brake and be ready to stop completely if necessary.
- Use a cruise assist such as a Throttle Rocker from throttlerocker.com this easy to install paddle dramatically reduces fatigue often caused be long rides. This can help prevent your hand from cramping, so you can break appropriately if you see a deer.
- There are also devices that you can purchase that mount to the front of your motorcycle. One is the Hornet Deer Avoidance Device, which is a precision tuned sonic generator that produces a high pitched, directional sonic wave, detouring animals. The other is the Save-A-Deer whistle which is a single unit air-activated animal alert. When mounted to a motorcycle moving at 35 mph or faster, these devices make a sound that alerts deer and other animal obstacles of the approaching vehicle and assists with accident prevention.
Take your time, slow down.
Remember that motorcycle deer accidents are more common in the countryside and on winding roads – where bikers like to ride. There is no “sure fire” ways of avoiding deer on the road. Extra vigilance and preparedness, knowing when and where to expect large animals, slowing down and being ready to brake hard and following the above tips seem to be the best way of avoiding and mitigating the dangers from deer.