Sturgeon County is reminding drivers to be aware of wildlife on the roads as we enter the fall season. 

The number of collisions between drivers and animals increases in the period of September to November as the amount of sunlight starts to dwindle. 

The county has already reported two collisions with wildlife this fall. Last year, the total number was 19. 

Pat Mahoney, manager of protective services and fire chief for Sturgeon County, says the responsibility to avoid a potential collision lies on the driver. 

“Moose and deer are more active at the times of day when more drivers are on the road,” said Mahoney. “This is a perfect mix for collisions, which is why drivers need to slow down and stay alert, especially in areas marked as deer or moose crossings.” 

The county also provided a list of tips and tricks to help drivers stay safe on the roads this year: 

  • Be aware of wildlife warning signs and slow down in those areas
  • Reduce your speed at dawn or dusk, especially in rural areas near water or lined with trees.
  • Be sure to scan the roadway and ditches ahead for animals. Keep your windshield and headlights clean to help with this. 
  • Slow down on road curves and when reaching hill crests. 
  • Use high beams whenever you can and watch for the shining eyes or silhouette of an animal at night. A deer’s eye will glow when they catch the light, but larger animals such as moose may not be as easy to see.
  • If you do happen to see an animal on the road, Sturgeon County also has a guide on what to do. 
  • Slow down if an animal is on or near the road and be prepared to stop. Their behaviour is unpredictable. 
  • Honk in a series of short bursts to encourage animals to move out of the way.
  • If you see one animal, be on the lookout for more since some species travel in groups.
  • Brake firmly if an animal is in your path. If possible, avoid swerving as it could cause a more serious collision.
  • If you are unable to stop in time and a large animal, such as a moose, is in your path, consider swerving in a safe direction.

If you are involved in a collision with an animal you are told to contact RCMP. If the animal appears to be injured do not approach it and wait for emergency services to come to your aid.