Drivers in Illinois are warned to watch for deer on the road throughout the fall season.
Deer are more active in the fall which marks the beginning of their mating season, according to a statement from the Illinois Department of Transportation and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Drivers should be alert for deer that may wander onto the road, particularly during dusk and dawn.
“Deer have other things on their minds at this time of year. They aren’t looking out for motorists, so motorists need to be looking out for them,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn in the statement.
Last year there were 15,754 vehicle crashes with deer in Illinois, which is slightly up from the previous year, authorities said. In those crashes 628 people were injured and eight were killed.
About 45 percent of crashes involving deer in Illinois last year happened in October, November and December, authorities said. Nearly 80 percent those crashes happened in rural environments and 75 percent took place at night.
Madison County had the most crashes involving deer last year with 440 incidents, authorities said.