Hitting a deer may be easier than hunting one


Ever wonder just how many deer-vehicle collisions occur every year? According to numbers crunched by State Farm Insurance and reports published by the Outdoor Hub New service, well over 1 million crashes occur each year nationally with over 50 percent of them in just 10 states.

And yes, Ohio ranks right near the top, with nearly 68,000 collisions reported during the last 12 month tracking period.

The key word here is reported because certainly many more crashes go unreported as evidenced by the fur and blood smears on interstates, dead deer in ditches and fields, etc. And that’s only the dead deer that are visible.

Deer-vehicle collisions

In most cases, the number of reported deer-vehicle collisions is about one third as large as the number of hunter killed deer. In fact, if the numbers keep increasing, it may be easier to claim a deer by driving than by hunting. In many cases, the deer actually hit the vehicle, not the other way around.

Factors that inter the deer vs. car and truck score include the number of vehicles on the road at any time and the density of deer. The more vehicles plus the more deer equal the best chance of a collision.

Pennsylvania warning

The latest information printed by Outdoor Hub indicates that State Farm claims that by adding in all factors, drivers in certain states have the best chance (is this luck or what) of hitting a deer.

Pennsylvania drivers win with a 39.9 chance of hitting of being hit by a deer while the odds jump dramatically to around one in 70 for the Michigan and Iowa. Pennsylvania also claims to honors for deer collisions with over 115,000 reported during the July 2011-July 2012 period.

Gun sales

Now let’s do some shopping. Is there a gun buying mania in America? Yes, yes,, yes, and on one recent day, Black Friday, the phone at the FBI call center for background checks required of gun buyers, rang 154,873 times plus rang busy countless times when the call center became so overloaded that the phone systems crashed more than once for several minutes.

Fear of changing laws

According to comments from local gun dealers the buying craze is all about the fear that recently re-elected President Obama is planning to further restrict the process of buying firearms. While none of the dealers talked to can cite any real evidence of that, they are enjoying record sales.

On Black Friday alone, legal sales of all firearms increased 20 percent over Black Friday sales in 2011, a record year itself.

Keep in mind that handguns represent only a portion of the total sales with sporting and target model shotguns and rifles represent the majority with significant discounts and holiday gift buying as incentives to buyers.

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Mike Tontimonia has been writing weekly columns and magazine features about the outdoors for over 25 years, a career that continues to hold the same excitement for him as it did at the beginning. Mike is a retired educator, a licensed auctioneer and marketing consultant. He lives in Ravenna, Ohio and enjoys spending time at his Carroll County cabin. Mike has hunted and fished in several states and Canada from the Carolinas to Alaska and from Idaho to Delaware. His readers have often commented that the stories about his adventures are about as close to being there as possible. He is past president of the Outdoor Writers of Ohio and a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America. Mike is also very involved in his community as a school board member and a Rotarian.



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