Drivers Warned to Beware of Deer

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Drivers beware,  deer mating season is in full swing and the animals are on the move. This is the time of year when the number of vehicle accidents caused by deer spike.

It can happen to anyone. You're driving and a deer darts in front of your car. A scenario that became a reality Friday morning for one local man.

"It was so fast I didn't know what happened. It flipped over, went over my windshield and I saw it's body from the back of my rear view mirror," said Phillip Newsome.

He was driving to work around 2:30 Friday morning when a deer jumped in front of him on Winterpock Road in Chesterfield.

"In probably less than 3 seconds it was over," he added.

Deer are out in large numbers right now, so you can expect to see more deer  not only in wooded areas of the county, but also right in the city.

Our camera caught a deer on the side of Parham Road  in Henrico, apparently hit by a vehicle.

"It's breeding season for white tail deer in Virginia and they are more active than any other time of the year," said Julia Dixon, spokeswoman for Game and Inland Fisheries.

If a deer leaps in front of your car, slow down and don't swerve.

"You're more likely to run off the road or hit another vehicle," she added.

If you see one deer it's likely there are others not far behind.

"Because they are herding animals.  As drivers we have to be mindful they're out there the same time we are," said Dixon.

As for Newsome, his car is damaged, but he's okay.

"I feel lucky that I'm okay. It could have been a lot worse," said Newsome.

Experts say 80% of all deer-related accidents happen between sunset and sunrise, something to keep in mind now that we're out of daylight saving time.

A recent report ranks Virginia in the top ten for deer related accidents on the road nationwide.

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