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Norfolk one of the worst areas for deer vehicle collisions

'Deer Aware' campaign: Picture: Deer Initiative

'Deer Aware' campaign: Picture: Deer Initiative

Archant

Norfolk has been named as one of the worst areas in the country for reported deer vehicle collisions.

While DVCs are very widespread throughout almost all parts of England as well as increasing parts of Wales, according to the Deer Initiative’s research for 2008–2013, some of the worst areas are in Thetford and The Brecklands.

The roads affected include the B1106 Brandon to Bury St Edmunds, B1107 Brandon to Thetford, A11 Mildenhall, A1065 Swaffham to Mundford and the A134 to Thetford.

Other hotspots in Norfolk include minor roads around King’s Lynn, Dereham and Diss.

Research shows that there are up to 75,000 DVCs each year in the UK resulting in 400 to 700 human injuries and several human fatalities each year.

A spokesman for the DI said it was not breaking down the figures into areas, but confirmed that Norfolk was one of the worst affected counties, and added that the number of reported incidents may be just the tip of the iceberg.

It is estimated that over 14,000 vehicles in the UK will incur significant damage as a result of DVCs, imposing further costs up to £50m incurred through human injury DVC accidents alone.

Further substantial economic losses not included in the above estimate arise through traffic delays, dealing with injured and removal of dead deer from the roadside as well as the extensive impact of DVCs in terms of animal welfare.

The DI is a broad partnership of statutory, voluntary and private sector interests dedicated to ‘ensuring the delivery of a sustainable wild deer population in England and Wales’.

Together with the Highways Agency, the DI is reminding motorists to be ‘Deer Aware’ as collisions between deer and vehicles increase at this time of year.

October through to December is considered a high-risk time as many deer will be on the move to and from rutting grounds during the autumn mating season.

Dr Jochen Langbein, who has been working with the DI on DVCs for the past 10 years, said: “Aside from the surge in activity by our three largest deer species (fallow, sika and red deer) during their autumn rut, as days shorten and the clocks go back, peak traffic times also coincide with dawn and dusk when activity of all deer species is at its daily peak.”

Have you been involved in a collision with a deer in Norfolk? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

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