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Deer Xing

At night around here, I usually drive a good deal below the speed limit.  On my way home this evening, I was doing about 35 MPH in a 55 zone.  It's a good thing I was.

Two deer suddenly dashed across the road in front of me.  My car was loaded down with 700 pounds of animal feed, but at 35, stopping quickly was still fairly easy and I managed to stop with plenty of room to spare and without even stressing the brakes.  I'm sure the guy behind me, who was probably getting annoyed at my slow speed, was grateful that I was driving so slow.  If I'd been doing 55 (or faster, most people do 60-70 on this road; I usually do in the daytime), either I or more likely the guy behind me would have ended up plowing right into them, wrecking a car and a deer or two.

I see people flying down these roads at night, and I see dead deer on the sides of the roads almost every day.  I still haven't figured out whether these people are ignorant, don't care, trust to luck or are just plain stupid.  Probably all four.

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equusmaximus
Dec. 18th, 2010 04:33 am (UTC)
Glad to hear that you and the deer are all fine, if perhaps a little startled. There are deer all over the place up here too, and we always slow down at night as a result. I've had a couple of close encounters, but thankfully never a hit yet.

I'm just glad I have fog-lamps on the vehicles. There are nights when the fog gets so thick, you can barely see past the hood of the car. That's when you slow down to a crawl, and just take your time. It's not like the farm is going to move!
centauress
Dec. 18th, 2010 06:12 am (UTC)
Deer aren't likely to be on the road in the rain, and I've never had trouble with them at full speed. It's about what you do when they do bolt, more than anything. And many people aren't paying attention.

So the only thing I've ever hit was a rabbit, and really, it only got five feet at full speed before it hit me while I was at 50mph.
captpackrat
Dec. 18th, 2010 07:48 am (UTC)
The roads around here are really narrow and there are fields and trees along each side. The deer just appear out of the fields, dash across the highway and disappear into the woods on the other side. If you're doing anything more than a crawl, it's really hard to miss if they dart out right in front of you like they did today.

They often travel in groups, so even if you see one cross, there might be more right behind.

The only animal I've ever come close to hitting was a pigeon. I didn't see it in time and drove over it. Somehow it managed to pass underneath my car unharmed and took off straight up. Unfortunately, there was a bus right behind me. All I saw was an explosion of feathers.
equusmaximus
Dec. 18th, 2010 02:58 pm (UTC)
I've hit a few pigeons when I was driving the C-Trains for Calgary Transit. Fat, lazy city birds that would try to fly up and directly into the path of the train instead of hopping two steps over to the side to avoid getting hit. You'd think a bird would be soft, but hitting one at speed makes a sound like getting hit with a brick!
fangwolf57
Dec. 18th, 2010 08:48 pm (UTC)
Yeah it happens. I drive HWY 2 a lot between Lincoln and Nebraska City and 2 years ago it was really bad every other mile there was a dead dear or the remains of its guts on the highway. Also watch out for wild turkeys they are out there too.
rratfox
Dec. 18th, 2010 10:35 pm (UTC)
If you'd been going faster, when the deer crossed you'd have already been gone!
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