The good news is that the likelihood that a Montana driver will strike a deer is down 15% from last year, however Big Sky country still ranks #3 nationally (1 in 75) on the list of states most likely to collide with a deer in the next 12 months (State Farm data). The study further reveals the national average is 1 in 169, but that likelihood more than doubles during October, November and December, when deer collisions are most prevalent.

For the eighth year in a row, West Virginia tops the list of states where a collision is most likely. The odds a West Virginia driver will collide with a deer are a staggering 1 in 39, nearly a 5 percent increase compared to 2013. Hawaii rounds out the bottom of the list also for the eighth year in a row with odds of 1 in 10,281. Hawaiians are three times more likely to get struck by lightning in their lifetime than they are to hit a deer in the next year.

The top five states where a driver is most likely to collide with a deer are:

West Virginia
South Dakota

Avoid becoming a statistic:
Use extra caution in known deer zones
Always wear your seatbelt
At night, when there is no oncoming traffic, use high beams
Avoid swerving when you see a deer
Scan the road for deer and other danger signs
Do not rely on devices such as deer whistles

And here are some deer facts that all drivers should know:
Deer are on all roads
Deer are unpredictable
Deer often move in groups
Deer movement is most prevalent in the fall
Dusk and dawn are high risk times

It’s important to practice safe driving habits and watch out for animals on the road. Wearing your seat belt and practicing defensive driving tactics could make a significant difference.