Deer Collision Study Reveals Best State to Bag a Deer with Vehicle

By Hunting NetworkSeptember 22, 2014

LAST UPDATED: May 1st, 2015

The annual car/deer collision study was released by State Farm Insurance Agency earlier last week and the results are not surprising. For the eighth year in a row, West Virginia tops the country with the greatest odds of hitting a deer at 1 in 39, nearly a five percent increase from last year. The state least likely for a car/deer collision remains Hawaii, with odds at 1 in 10,281. In fact, Hawaiians are three times more likely to get struck by lightning in their lifetime than to hit a deer in the next twelve months.

Despite hunter claims of declining deer populations nationwide, according to the new study, U.S. drivers are three times more likely to collide with a deer over the next twelve months than they were over the previous twelve. Those odds have climbed to 1 in 169 drivers and nearly double during the deer breeding months of October, November, and December.

deer hit by car

The odds of a U.S. driver colliding with a deer over the next twelve months have increased to 1 in 169 despite hunter reaction to declining deer populations nationwide.

While the results of such a survey may seem insignificant to many deer hunters, it’s important for us all to understand that such studies do in fact have an impact on how our deer herds are managed and ultimately regulated by state and local game officials.

Ron Regan, executive director for the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies stated in the car/deer collision study that, “Changes in collision rates from year to year are a reflection of changing deer densities or population levels – more deer in a given area increases the potential for collision. Deer populations are also affected by conditions such as new or improved roads with higher speeds near deer habitat, changes to hunting seasons to manage wildlife, winter conditions, and other related factors.”

The top twenty states for a car/deer collision according to the report include:

1. West Virginia – 1 in 39 drivers
2. Pennsylvania – 1 in 71
3. Montana – 1 in 75
4. Iowa – 1 in 77
5. South Dakota – 1 in 82
6. Mississippi – 1 in 84
7. Wisconsin – 1 in 85
8. Minnesota – 1 in 88
9. Virginia – 1 in 88
10. South Carolina – 1 in 93
11. Michigan – 1 in 94
12. North Carolina – 1 in 103
13. Kentucky – 1 in 107
14. Arkansas – 1 in 107
15. Wyoming – 1 in 110
16. North Dakota – 1 in 120
17. Maryland – 1 in 121
18. Missouri – 1 in 124
19. Ohio – 1 in 127
20. Alabama – 1 in 127

Do your part this deer season. Take a deer for the freezer and off our nation’s highways.

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