Hitting a deer is not uncommon in North Dakota, so how do you handle it?

Recently, I had a close call and almost hit a deer on my way back to Bismarck from Minot. After my heart rate slowed down, I started to think about what I would actually do if I hit the deer. Are you supposed to call someone? Where do you put the deer?

Like most people, I thought it was required by law to call law enforcement. That's not the case. According to the North Dakota Department of Transportation, you are only required to call law enforcement if there is an injury or fatality.

Okay, so now what do you do with the deer? You are required to move it to the side of the road if it is safe and you are able. If it were me, I'd be crying hysterically and unable to move the deer. If that's the case, you can call your North Dakota Department of Transportation district office or North Dakota State Radio at 800-472-2121 so they can move the deer.

NDDOT also offers some helpful tips for driving where deer and wildlife are present:

  • Use high beam headlights when you are able.
  • Scan the ditches while driving and if you notice an animal's eyes, slow down!
  • If you see a deer, slow down and press down on your horn to create one long blast.
  • Do not swerve when you see a deer and break firmly.
  • If you see one deer, they are rarely alone.

We hope you take this as a reminder to stay safe and alert while driving!

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