Car-deer accidents on the decline in Illinois

By Ryne Turke on November 15, 2014 at 12:30pm

Officials are reporting that totals from 2013 compared to 2012 show the number of accidents are down one percent.

Chris Young, a spokesman for the Illinois Department for Natural Resources, takes a look at the numbers from the past decade.

“In 2004 there were 25,847 deer-vehicle accidents reported in Illinois and in 2013 there were 15,328,” says Young.

2004 still remains the state record for most deer-vehicle accidents. Young says the state-wide goal was to reduce numbers 14 percent from the mid-2000s.

“The department has been working to reduce the number in some counties,” says Young.

“Right now our state-wide target has been met but we are still looking to reduce the number of deer-vehicle accidents in some counties.”

Young believes the main reason there has been fewer accidents is because there isn’t as many deer in the state.

“Hunters are our main management tool for managing deer numbers in Illinois,” says Young.

“Without them we wouldn’t be able to control the number of deer. Those hunters are a crucial part of our management effort.”

Evaluating crashes has changed over the years. Right now, accidents over $1,000 are required to be reported. In the early 2000s it was only $500 worth of damage.