Autumn is the rutting season, and the danger from deer crossing the German roads increases massively. In my native Bavaria, I have had to execute emergency braking manoeuvres, for a deer crossing the road directly in front of my car, at least 20 times. Particularly early in the morning (05:00 to 08:00hrs) and in the evening (17:00 to 22:00hrs), the deer is moving and it is recommendable to carefully watch the roadside, with glades, skirts of the woods and fields requiring your special attention. The red and white danger signs ‘deer pass’ indicate danger zones where you shouldn’t drive faster than 60 to 70km/h. And you always should keep your distance from the car driving in front of you as it could be forced to brake all of a sudden.
In the case of a collision with a deer, the driver has to inform the police or the closest forestry office. The scene of the accident must be safeguarded and flagged. However, never touch the injured or dead animal! It could be sick. And those who think they can simply take an injured deer home are wrong. If you do so you are guilty of poaching. The damage caused by such a collision can be massive. In a 100km/h collision, a 20kg deer represents the mass of a ton. Every single year, 200,000 such accidents take place, many of them cause injuries.
According to the police, the estimated number of unknown cases even is even higher. In consideration of this situation, it’s not too comforting that the claim settlement in the case of a deer accident is usually far less dramatic than most of the motorists assume. Usually, your TPFT insurance will cover the damages on your car – provided that the animal you hit was a so called fur game such as a deer, a wild boar or a hare and not a cat, a cow or a sheep.