While we're in the car thinking about how we're going to make ourselves comfortable on the sofa at home, a portion of pasta on our laps, our favorite TV show on – a deer on the side of the road can abruptly interrupt our plans. If there is a sudden game change, we have little time to react properly. Read here how to keep the damage as low as possible in case of an incident.
When Bambi becomes a danger – four tips for prevention:
For the year 2019, the GDV reported 295.000 game accidents. Disturbing, because we have it with a plus of a proud 27.000 claims to do compared to 2018! The resulting property damage is immense – not to mention the injured and resulting fatalities. Motorists must therefore be particularly vigilant in spring and autumn, because then the wild animals are very active and can jump unnoticed in front of the vehicle. Nevertheless, a collision can never be ruled out, but our tips can help to prevent the danger:
Know risk times: Be aware that with the change from summer to winter time, the likelihood of wildlife accidents increases. The animals usually go in search of food at dusk from 5 p.M. Onwards. The danger of deer crossing is then increased until 8 o'clock in the morning.
Special care: Generally drive slower and with increased attention in forest sections and along fields at dusk, paying particular attention to wildlife crossing signs. Keep an eye on the lane edges.
The correct use of high beams and horn: Drive with high beam to be able to recognize the eyes of the animals already at far sight. However, dazzle as soon as animals appear on the side of the road, so that they do not freeze in the light. By pressing the horn, the animals can be if necessary. Always count on latecomers as well!
Take speed limits seriously: A deer weighing 20 kg develops an impact weight of already half a ton at the speed of an approaching car of 50km/h. Wild boar and fallow deer weigh 3.5 and 2.5 tons respectively, a red deer has an impact weight of a full 5 tons!
If it crashes after all
If a collision is unavoidable, don't try to avoid it! The collision with another car or a tree usually involves greater dangers than the collision with an animal! Instead, brake hard, stay in your lane and hold the steering wheel firmly, otherwise you endanger oncoming traffic as well as yourself.
But even if you swerved in an attempt to avoid a deer collision and suffered vehicle damage: VHV pays with an existing partial cover insurance even if it turns out that the evasion had been grossly wrong from hindsight (such as with a small animal). In order to provide you with the best possible protection, VHV has also waived the option here to limit or refuse the benefit in the case of grossly negligent causation of damage.
And after the collision? Turn on the hazard lights. Set up the warning triangle 100 meters away. Since deer accidents often happen in the dark, ideally turn on a warning light and don't forget to put on your high-visibility vest to prevent further accidents. Report the accident to the police. Wait at the scene of an accident. Get a certificate about the wildlife accident. Photos to preserve evidence: Take photos of the accident scene, the vehicle and the animal (in some cases, animals are only shocked and flee when the shock-induced impairment is over)!). This is helpful for fast claims processing.
No unauthorized action: Do not simply take the animal, this would fall under the offence of hunting poaching. The recovery of the animal is the task of the forester or hunting leaseholder. If possible, you should not touch the animals with your bare hands! You could get infected with rabies or other diseases. If the animal flees, inform the hunting leaseholder or the forester about the direction of escape if possible. Contact the insurance company: Report to your insurance company before the wildlife tracks are removed or the vehicle is repaired, scrapped or sold.
What insurance pays?
The partial cover insurance of VHV protects you in case of collisions with animals of all kinds – this does not necessarily have to be wild animals. Also damages after accidents with birds or domestic animals are insured over it. And the best is: On the personal no-claims bonus a damage caused by game has no influence. Even if the shock is still deep in your limbs, at least you don't have to worry about the cost of repairs – we'll iron out the dents for you.