North Little Rock, AR (October 26, 2012) For the sixth year in a row, West Virginia tops the list of states where an individual driver is most likely to run into a deer. By comparison, Louisiana is much safer in terms of the incidence of deer crashes, ranking 37th nationally.
Using its claims data and state licensed driver counts from the Federal Highway Administration, State Farm, the nations leading auto insurer, calculates the chances of a West Virginia motorist striking a deer over the next 12 months at 1 in 40. The chances of one of Louisianas 3 million motorists hitting a deer is 1 in 366. That indicates 8,400 car-deer collisions in the next year.
Other states having the highest likelihood of deer collisions are South Dakota (1 in 68), then Iowa (1 in 71.9), Michigan (1 in 72.4), and Pennsylvania is fifth (1 in 76).
The state in which deer-vehicle mishaps are least likely is still Hawaii (1 in 6,801).
The number of deer-related collisions in the U.S. has increased by 7.7 percent over the last year. This jump comes after a 3-year period during which these collisions dropped 2.2 percent.
State Farm estimates 1.23 million collisions caused by the presence of deer occurred in the U.S. between July 1, 2011 and June 30, 2012
State Farm spokesman Gary Stephenson stated, Over the last four years, the number of deer-related claims we paid has increased 7.9 percent while other similar auto claims** have declined 8.5 percent. Overall, the frequency of auto claims has declined recently, but that is not the case with deer-related claims.
State Farms data shows that November is the month during which deer-vehicle encounters are most likely. More than 18 percent of all such mishaps take place during in November. Deer-vehicle collisions are three times more likely to occur on a day in November than they are on any day between February 1st and August 31st. October is the second most likely month for a crash involving a deer and a vehicle. December is third.
The average property damage cost of these incidents during the final half of 2011 and the first half of 2012 was $3,305, up 4.4 percent from the year before.
Here are tips from the Insurance Information Institute on how to reduce the odds of a deer-vehicle confrontation involving your vehicle becoming part of State Farms survey next year:
State Farm is the leading insurer of autos in Arkansas.
* A change in State Farms claims reporting process caused the number of deer-vehicle collisions reported a year ago to be understated by 5.1 percent countrywide. Thus, comparisons between data we provided a year ago and data in this news release should not be made. The link below provides the corrected numbers for last year (July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011) are provided.Chart listing likelihood of vehicle-deer confrontation by state (corrected version for 2010-11)
** This encompasses first-party, collision or comprehensive coverage claims not caused by weather, criminal activity or fire and not including breakage of glass claims.
Gary Stephenson, State Farm Public Affairs, (501) 350-4440
State Farm and its affiliates are the largest provider of car insurance in the U.S. and is a leading insurer in Canada. In addition to providing auto insurance quotes, their 17,800 agents and more than 65,000 employees serve 81 million policies and accounts more than 79 million auto, home, life and health policies in the United States and Canada, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for renters, business owners, boats and motorcycles, is also available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 43 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit http://www.statefarm.com or in Canada http://www.statefarm.ca.