FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, November 05, 2021
NYC PARKS URGES DRIVERS TO WATCH FOR DEER AS THE CLOCKS TURN BACK FOR THE END OF DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME
Vehicle collisions down 54% in 2021
With this weekend’s Daylight Saving Time clock dial back, NYC Parks urges New Yorkers to exercise increased caution and to look out for deer while driving. In New York City, deer-vehicle collisions continue to trend downward, with a 54% decline in collisions reported to NYPD to date, compared to 2017, the first full year of the Deer Impact Management Plan.
Deer activity increases dramatically during deer mating season--October through December. Drivers should be alert, drive safely, and slow down near parks, especially at dawn and dusk. To help drivers stay safe, WildlifeNYC offers three tips for reducing deer vehicle collisions:
1. Understand Wildlife Habits
- Activity peaks in autumn during the breeding season.
2. Take Preventative Action
- The most important thing you can do to avoid a collision with wildlife is to slow down. Drive the posted speed limit, and even slower in areas with known deer populations.
3. How to React
- If a deer runs in front of your vehicle, brake firmly but do not swerve. Swerving can take a motorist into oncoming traffic or off the road.
- Call 911 in the event of a collision.
To increase deer awareness near roadways, DOT has deployed three new variable message system (VMS) boards in key locations in Staten Island: Coming off of the Outerbridge Crossing where the West Shore Expressway and the Korean War Veterans Memorial Parkway split; Coming off of the Goethals Bridge at Exit 5, where the Staten Island Expressway and the West Shore Expressway split; and on Drumgoole Road West before the entrance to the Korean War Veterans Memorial Parkway, coming from Richmond Avenue. The VMS boards constantly remind Staten Island motorists, cyclists and pedestrians that deer are extremely mobile and sightings occur throughout the entire borough.
As high population levels of white-tailed deer can pose significant challenges to human health and safety through deer-vehicle collisions, the City launched its Deer Impact Management plan in 2016, outlining immediate steps to reduce future impacts of an overabundant deer population. The five-pronged plan includes:
- Sterilization Study through humane sterilization of male deer
- Traffic Safety Measures
- Natural Resource Protection
- Extensive Public Engagement and Education
- Impact Monitoring
Launched in 2016, the City’s study to control Staten Island’s deer population continues to yield positive results. The study’s fifth population estimate, conducted in January 2021, estimated approximately 1,616 deer in the borough, an approximate 21% reduction in Staten Island’s deer population since January 2017. Field work for the study will resume on Staten Island this December.
New Yorkers are encouraged to report wildlife sightings through a web portal on the WildlifeNYC website to help track the movements of each species. To learn more about WildlifeNYC, visit nyc.gov/wildlife.