State Route 64 had most deer crashes in 2014

A stretch of area highway had the most deer crashes in the state, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation. State Route 64 between Airport Highway and Reed Road had 19 crashes in 2014.

State Route 64 (Waterville Swanton Road) travels south from Swanton in this area with Oak Openings Metropark on the east side of the road much of the way.

Stark County had the most deer crashes with 514 overall. Williams County was the only county in northwest Ohio in the top 10 as it was 10th with 375 crashes.

“Fewer daylight hours, the increased movement of deer due to mating season, along with hunting season, can mean a greater risk of collisions between deer and vehicles,” said ODOT Director Jerry Wray.

ODOT offers the following tips to avoid collisions with deer:

• Watch for deer crossing signs and drive with extreme caution, especially in the posted areas.

• If you see a deer near the road, expect that others will follow.

• Watch for deer near roadways, especially at dawn and after sunset. About 20 percent of these crashes occur in early morning, while over half occur between 5 p.m. and midnight.

• After dark, use high-beams when there isn’t oncoming traffic. These will illuminate the deer eyes allowing more time to react.

• Always wear safety belts and drive at safe, sensible speeds for road conditions.

If a vehicle strikes a deer, motorists should report the crash by calling local law enforcement, the sheriff’s department, the Ohio State Highway Patrol, or the Ohio Department of Natural Resources – even if there was no damage to the motorist’s vehicle. Motorists can claim the carcass through those agencies.