Wisconsin 2012 Deer Accident Statistics by County
Dane County among Most Dangerous for Deer Collisions
There were nearly 19,000 collisions involving deer on Wisconsin roadways in 2012, above the 6-year average of roughly 17,000. By comparison, there were just over 5,000 alcohol-related crashes over the same year. Fortunately, deer accidents are much less likely to end in death or injury to human passengers than alcohol-related crashes, but they cost victims millions of dollars in economic impact every year.
Dane County saw the highest number of deer accidents in 2012 with 851, followed by Shawano County with 800 and Waukesha County with 710.
Luckily for those involved, of the 39 crashes with reported injuries none proved fatal.
This was not the case in Outagamie County, whose 2 deer crash fatalities were the most among Wisconsin Counties in 2012.
Overall, 90% of all deer crashes occurred on rural roads, highways and county trunks. Nearly 95% of crashes with injuries occurred outside of cities, and only 1 of the 14 deer-related traffic deaths in 2012 happened in an urban environment.
Dane County has a unique combination of heavy traffic spreading outward from the urban center of Madison and plentiful forest and farmland deer use for shelter and food. Together, these factors lead to more dangerous conditions throughout the year.
Deer Activity Accelerates in Late Spring
Most Wisconsin drivers understand deer are a major automotive danger in the fall. The mating season for deer in Wisconsin begins in October, and the November hunting season typically drives deer into more unpredictable behavior.
However, late spring and early summer are frequently just as dangerous as October.
Ten times between 1996 and 2012 June was the second-most dangerous month for deer crashes behind November. In 2012, 75 deer crashes occurred in June with 58 more in July. October saw only 53.
The Wisconsin DOT believes this secondary peak period is the result of young deer moving out on their own for the first time.
Deer Danger Index for Wisconsin Motorists
Given the sweeping differences between population and urban/rural acreage among Wisconsin counties, we developed a formula to better illustrate the dangers deer pose to drivers throughout Wisconsin.
Each deer crash fatality is counted 15 times, injuries are counted 5 times and all other crashes are counted once. Each county’s population is divided against this total to create our per capita “Deer Danger Index.”
Central Wisconsin counties dominate the top of the Deer Danger Index, with residents of Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara, Marquette, Green Lake and Columbia Counties having suffered some of the greatest damages per capita.
Lafayette, Taylor, Marquette and Door Counties round out the top 10. Door County’s high tourist population in the summer is a likely contributing factor.
Predictably, residents of Milwaukee, Racine, Kenosha and Rock Counties were among the least likely to be involved in deer accidents in 2012. Large urban centers with fewer forests and farmlands leave deer with little food and shelter. Just as importantly, densely populated areas give deer fewer access points to high-speed freeways.
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No Such Thing as a No-Fault Accident
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a car or motorcycle collision with a deer, contact the Warshafsky Law Firm to discuss your options. Even if it was a one-car accident, we can help you find ways to recoup what your insurance doesn’t cover.
Warshafsky employs a meticulous in-house investigation and accident reconstruction team. Our investigators find what the police and other law firms ignore, and what insurance companies want to keep hidden. We root out hidden liabilities so you aren’t left to pay for the negligence of others.
At Warshafsky Law Firm, we understand when you’ve been injured, it is about the money.
Contact the car accident law firm Madison turns to for the largest settlements and judgments to receive a free consultation on your case.
All cited information is courtesy of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and represents the most recent crash statistics available at the time of posting
Deer crash statistics for all non-injury collisions require a threshold of at least $1000 in property damage to be recorded