What's the proper response for a deer running in front of you? Near collision today,.

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Hollywood D, Jun 18, 2019.

  1. Hollywood D

    Hollywood D Been here awhile

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    Well a lot of things paid for themselves today and a few almost did. My goretex gear I upgraded last year since it was pouring rain on the way home. I have all Revit gear and some held gloves. Boots are A*. I just happened to fit some crash bars yesterday and rode it the dealer this morning for it's first 500 mile service.

    On the way home I'm headed up the highway. Its Hwy 285 outside of Denver, heading south of Conifer. There's a long sweeping turn and its uphill until you get to my neighborhood. Car in front of me was about 5mph under the speed limit. The road there was damp at best, the rain had already passed through there earlier. I change lanes to the left lane to go around the car. A few seconds later I see this brown mass charging from the shoulder of the road. It's a big ass buck.

    I wouldn't say I went into panic mode. If I had done that I probably would have crashed. It started to slow down in the right hand lane so I started to swerve to the left as I'm grabbing a handful of front brake. Luckily no one was coming down the hill or this would have been an accident since I would have had to stay in my lane. They say when you encounter a dog you should slow down then speed up since I guess it messes with their depth perception.

    The deer slowed for a split second then picks up speed, probably trying to avoid the car in the right lane that I had just passed. That car is probably 1 car length behind me at the most at this point. As the deer picks up speed we are on a definite collision course so I continue to swerve left into the oncoming lane. Again, lucky me there was no oncoming traffic in sight. I grab more front brake and slow down enough to avoid him. The deer was also applying the throttle and turning to his right (Away from me) as I was slowing down...luckily. I'd say I was about 4 feet from broadsiding him. This all happened in the course of about 2-3 seconds. I kicked it down into 3rd and got back into my lane and continued on.

    My first thought was, well at least the deer is somewhat soft so it won't hurt too bad. Better than hitting a car. Second thought was, glad I have all this top of the line protective gear on. Third thought was...where he hell is the car that was next to me? They must have freaked out and came to a complete stop because I looked in my mirror and they weren't there anymore.

    My questions is, is there really a proper response to a deer (or any other animal) running out in front of you? They say you shouldn't swerve in a car. If I had been in my truck I just would have hit it. No risk of going ass over end, just property damage. Of course a motorcycle is a different story. One of my first thought's was, I should have stayed behind that car instead of passing it since I was close to my turn off anyways. But the more I think about it, they slammed on the brakes so hard I probably would have rear ended the car.

    If you read all this, then thank you.
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  2. everready

    everready Stuck in Ohio....Ugh!!!

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    A proper response? Do everything you can to avoid the deer and not get hurt............ if nothing else scrub off speed to lessen the impact.
    #2
  3. craigincali

    craigincali I'll try it.

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    ^^ what he said.
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  4. windypoint

    windypoint Been here awhile

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    The only thing I would add is, where there is one, there are usually more close by.
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  5. gen1fizzy

    gen1fizzy Been here awhile

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    You're the one who didn't hit the deer so you tell us.
    Good job, I probably would have spattered it.
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  6. CCitis

    CCitis Been here awhile

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    Dude, you have to just "lay er down". :-) JK. It's situational. Every situation is different. I have had it when the deer is out of the way enough that I can swerve behind it... but they can double back in a hurry. Usually it is just haul on the brakes... at least then if you hit it you will have less energy. If I see them on the side of the road doing their thing I slow waaaay down. I also wear an air vest to increase my odds when I come off the bike.
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  7. Hollywood D

    Hollywood D Been here awhile

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    Yea I wasn't sure if you're better off not swerving at all and just slowing down, but every situation is different. I guess when you're dealing with another thing that knows how to 'think' there's no hard and fast rule.
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  8. hardwaregrrl

    hardwaregrrl ignore list Supporter

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    Yeah, I've always been told that they're so unpredictable that it's best to come to a stop or scrub off as much speed as possible.....not so easy when being tailgated. I have a habit of using cars to "block" me while traveling in areas of deer...at least when I see a deer crossing sign I know that it's very possible since there have to be so many impacts that the sign was installed. It wasn't really an option for you. You did awesome imho...that could've been dinner. Was it a whitetail or a muley?
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  9. ozmoses

    ozmoses . Supporter

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    The one time a deer nailed me dead center of my front wheel, I had just caught a glimpse of it running toward the road through the roadside brush and slowed considerably...I've always wondered what if I'd twisted the throttle instead?

    Generally speaking, an impact at lower speed is preferable- avoiding impact ,at all, is best.

    However, many drivers here will swerve to avoid a deer,turkey,squirrel,etc and end up in a ditch or tree.

    In a car or truck,it's far better to hit the animal than a tree.

    Many times I've herded one or more deer off the road with my moto or truck; deer are not as scared of vehicles as they once were 'round here and do not always move for traffic.

    It's odd.

    As for this:
    Don't count on it.
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  10. Hollywood D

    Hollywood D Been here awhile

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    I think it was a whitetail. I would guess he had about 14” of fuzzy antlers sticking out
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  11. flei

    flei cycletherapist

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    "My questions is, is there really a proper response to a deer (or any other animal) running out in front of you? "

    Well, yes, I have in fact perfected what I feel is a proper response to a deer that is running out in front of me:

    First, shout "MOTHERFUCKER!" as loud and quickly as possible.

    Second, scream like a little girl.

    Third, kiss your ass good-bye.

    Actually, it appears the OP handled it perfectly. :-)
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  12. Getdrty

    Getdrty Adventurer

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    For me it's punch the deer in the face with my handlebar. That's what I did anyway. Still don't know how I didn't crash
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  13. CaseyJones

    CaseyJones Ridin' that train

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    Exactly. Brakes, hard brakes. Dodge if you can, but remember, that thing you're dodging has its own mind.

    The slower the speed, the more likely you'll get out of an impact, easily. The one time I hit a deer with a bike, I'd gotten it down to 25. His head hit the plastic cladding and exploded it; but I stayed up. Not a nice start to the morning, but I had no road-rash.

    The bike was another story...I didn't have comprehensive insurance, but it wasn't worth repairing. I was moving several states away and gave the damaged cycle to someone off CL.
    #13
  14. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

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    WRONG! It'll only be "soft" if you're both at walking pace.

    It's very simple physics; f=ma. Force= mass X acceleration.

    A 125lb female deer (males can weigh up to 300lbs) running at 30mph represents 3750lbs of force if it hits you directly, and we haven't even factored in your mass or velocity. That's a Nissan Altima or Toyota Camry's weight.

    You did the right thing by slowing down. You need to immediately slow down and drop a couple of gears, find your exits/ escape paths. A deer running parallel with you can suddenly swerve right at you. The bastards are unpredictable like that.
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  15. Smtm

    Smtm n00b

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    Get on the brakes then get on the horn They don’t seem to understand relative speed but they get that noise is a threat (Usually ymmv)
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  16. gen1fizzy

    gen1fizzy Been here awhile

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    Hard to predict what a deer will do. When I see one get on the brakes hard.
    That's the reason I don't like going north on the BRP from Fancy Gap. There are several miles where the Mountain Laurel is right on the edge of the road. If a deer came out of it, you wouldn't stand a chance.
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  17. RRF

    RRF Adventurer

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    I usually assume they’re gonna continue the same direction. I’ve seen them fall trying to reverse direction on pavement. I’d try to swerve around the ass end.
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  18. NE headshake

    NE headshake Non-discriminatory

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    If a deer is crossing a road following another deer that crossed before it, it knows that one made it safely so the other side is safe and it will continue on straight across if it gets startled. If it is alone or the first to cross, when it gets startled by an approaching vehicle or whatever it will turn and run back the way it came from because it knows it was safe back where it just came from. That's why sometimes you see them almost all the way across a road and when you approach they will turn and run back across in front of you(wtf).Then other times they are just starting to cross and when you approach they will run across in front of you to get to the other side(wtf).

    So if you ever see one cross way up in front of you and there is another standing on the edge getting ready to cross, you can bet your ass it's going to bolt across as soon as it gets startled by your approach. Usually perfect timing to get t boned by you depending on your speed.
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  19. hardwaregrrl

    hardwaregrrl ignore list Supporter

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    Nope.....don't bet your ass. I just saw this statement above proven wrong 4 times this morning on my way out for a hike. The only thing you can guarantee from seeing a deer is that you have no idea what it's going to do.
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  20. 9mm

    9mm Been here awhile

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    I believe the proper response to a deer near miss is pooping oneself. I bet the deer did.
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