If you’ve ever driven on an open, country road in the fall during nighttime hours, you know exactly what we mean when we say it’s that time of year again.

Just take a look at our accident reports during the last few weeks. Many area drivers have connected with a deer and ruined their vehicles.

But hitting a deer is a safer alternative than swerving to avoid one. It all comes down to making sure drivers don’t swerve into oncoming traffic or lose control; instead slow the vehicle down and brake to avoid the looming collision.

Officials say that is the safest route, to hit the deer — which even though it has a predictably bad outcome for the deer in most cases, is all-around safer for drivers, their passengers and other cars on the road.

There are other things drivers also can do to stay safe when deer are known to be out in full force. They include watching carefully from dusk to dawn, during spring and fall and near waterways and wooded areas. Also, slow down when driving in areas that are marked with signs cautioning motorists about deer, drive within the range of headlights and always remember to put on a seat belt.

We hope these tips keep you and your passengers as well as oncoming motorists safer should a deer wind up in your headlights.

This Week's Circulars