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Watch for animals on the roads this Fall

Animals can dart onto the road without warning
Animals can dart onto the road without warning

Lyndsay Morrison, staff writer

October 3, 2012 — Would you know what to do if a wild animal ran out in front of you on the roadway? Below are tips to keep you and your family safe this Fall.

Large animals are on the go during mating and migrating season
Large animals are on the go during mating and migrating season

Fall can be a risky time on the roads.

Darkness falls earlier and the roads can be slick. Factor in wild animals walking around, and the situation can become dangerous. 

Reports of vehicular accidents involving wild animals are up. And in the fall of 2010, several people died in moose collisions on New Brunswick roads.

Constable Gary Cameron of the New Brunswick RCMP spoke to The Weather Network at the time. He said large animals are on the go during mating and migration season, and they may end up in your path -- especially at dusk, in the middle of the night, or in wet weather. 

“When it's raining, and the roads are glossy, your eyes don't seem to differentiate on the different shapes ... So you should accommodate that and reduce your speed accordingly,” explained Cameron.

Cameron also said drivers need to make sure they're paying enough attention to the road.

“At night, it's more important that you're really, really cognizant of scanning the highway and using your high beams when you can.” 

Other tips for driving where there may be wild animals include the following: 

  • Look out for wild animal warning signs
  • Pull over to the curb or slow to a crawl if you spot an animal on the road ahead. 
  • Be aware that even if you only see one animal, it may be travelling in a group. 
  • If you see a smaller animal come on to the road at the last second, don't try to swerve to avoid hitting it. Put your safety first. 
  • If an animal is hit, there is a good chance that the animal may have to be put down even if it survives. Contact the Police - they are trained to handle the situation. 

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