Animals are colliding with cars more frequently in the US

While the number of miles driven by US motorists over the past five years has increased just 2%, the number of deer on vehicle collisions in this country during that time has grown by ten times that amount.

Using its claims data, State Farm estimated 2.3m collisions between deer and vehicles occurred in the US during the past two years. That's 21.1% more than five years earlier.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, deer vehicle collisions in the US cause about 200 fatalities each year.

These collisions are more frequent during the deer migration and mating season in October, November and December.  The combination of growing deer populations and the displacement of deer habitat caused by urban sprawl are producing increasingly hazardous conditions for motorists and deer, said State Farm.

Vehicle collisions with animals are much more likely during the last three months of the year and in the early evening. The infographic shows where the risk of colliding with a deer is highest in the US.

For the fourth year in a row, West Virginia is the state where a driver is most likely to collide with a deer.  The chances of a West Virginia driver striking a deer over the next 12 months are 1 in 42, according to the insurer.

US map showing likelihood of deer-vehicle collision by state Tips to avoid deer collisions:

Be aware of posted deer crossing signs.  These are placed in active deer crossing areas.

Remember that deer are most active between 6 and 9 pm Use high beam headlamps as much as possible at night to illuminate the areas from which deer will enter roadways.

Keep in mind that deer generally travel in herds – if you see one, there is a strong possibility others are nearby.

Do not rely on car-mounted deer whistles.

If a deer collision seems inevitable, attempting to swerve out of the way could cause you to lose control of your vehicle or place you in the path of an oncoming vehicle.