Stop wildlife collisions in their tracks

Canada is a country where people and wild animals happily co-exist – except that is, for the times when some of us get behind the wheel of a car.

Wildlife collisions are a real worry for Canadian drivers, particularly between April and June, when wildlife collisions are most frequent. The most costly result is injury or even death of both the animal and the driver. They’re more common than you’d think.

A report from Transport Canada found that between four and eight large animal vehicle collisions take place every hour in our country. "Most people, especially those in regions with a mix of urban and rural areas, need to be more aware of potential animal collisions," says insurance and claims expert, Mauro Convertini, from Aviva Canada. "It’s important that drivers know the risks and act responsibly behind the wheel to try to prevent these accidents."

Convertini offers these tips to reduce your chances of being involved in a wildlife collision while driving:

Read the signs and watch the road: Those yellow signs with the prancing deer are erected to warn drivers to slow down and to be more aware, especially at night.

Stay in control: Never swerve abruptly – hitting a tree or moving into oncoming traffic can result in significantly more harm than hitting the animal. Brake firmly if an animal is standing on, or crossing, the road.

React: If you can’t avoid striking the large animal, be ready to duck inside your car. Big animals can come through your windshield and with a weight in excess of 100 kilograms it is likely to cause severe injuries.

More information on road safety is available from your insurance broker or online at avivacanada.com.

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