Arkansas Ranks Number 6 in Deer Versus Car Collisions

JONESBORO, AR -- It is deer season and some deer will be bagged this year, but instead of the threat being hunters the threat will be motorists.

According to a new report issued by State Farm Insurance Arkansas is actually one of the fifteen high risk states in the nation coming in at number six.  The Craighead County Sheriff's Department tells Region 8 News they see at least thirty deer versus car accidents a year, maybe more.

Since these accidents are very common they could happen to anyone.

"I was outside of Salem, Arkansas about five-thirty in the morning.  Everything was fine and then a deer was immediately in front of me and I couldn't stop so I struck it," said Bob Gist.

Bob Gist is an insurance agent for state farm and said he's proof that anyone can hit a deer at any time.

"I was kind of watching but at that particular stretch of the road it was kind of higher grass and sometimes when those deer come out early in the morning there's just no way to avoid them," said Gist.

Kevin Meredith of Stadium Auto Body said they see about twelve or so car versus deer accidents a year.

"Sometimes they'll hit it in the side but most of the time the deer doesn't make it and they hit in the front.  That's when it usually causes the most damage," said Meredith.

Meredith said they are often surprised by the amount of damage an animal can do.  Gist said hitting the deer "head on" was the only choice he had.  This isn't his first encounter with a deer with this truck, but is the most substantial.  So, what effect will it have on his insurance?

"It will not go up for a comprehensive claim but of course, you're out your deductible.  I have a $1,000 deductible," said Gist.

He like many who have this type of accident learn an important lesson.

"Be more careful.  Be as careful as you can because they're everywhere," said Gist.