[TR] Oh deer
grandfatherjim at gmail.com
Thu Apr 9 17:36:25 MDT 2015
I live in a deery area. Used to think the local hunting lads were a bit
rednecky for me, but over time I have come to understand their desire to
kill, er, cull.
The short version of this story is, I have now hit seven deer, albeit none
in a TR3.
#1. One November many years ago, my son (soon to turn 30 btw) was about 2
and in his car seat beside me when the deer (well OK this was more of a
deer glance) leaped out of the ditch and thumped mightily into the
passenger side window, inches from my son's head. His response: "oh! doggie
go boom!". 75 Toyota Corolla.
#2. Heading a bit south of where we live to look at potentially buying a
house, and heading home from the viewing, a young deer jumped out right in
front of us and I hit it square on, whereupon it flew directly over the car
and I coasted to a stop on the shoulder of the road. The people who lived
in the house right there came running out, not to see if I was OK, but to
try and find the deer - which they could not. It must have been able t run
off, though the car was significantly damaged. This was a company car (89
Taurus) and they took the financial hit and sent it in to the body shop. It
came back all shiny and new and three weeks later.....
#3. I had a few months prior employed a new-to-Canada Filipina nanny, when
driving home in November on a rural road from somewhere at maybe 10pm,
going exactly the speed limit and minding my own business, boing! up pops a
deer from the ditch, we hit it Real Good, and it flies through the air into
the opposite ditch. Immediately a guy shows up and asks if we want the deer
(in Ontario, if you hit one, you get to keep it even if it's out of
season). I told the dude he was welcome to it, and he took off to get his
truck and his Big Knife. Police Officer Hollywood (his real name) shows up
after a while, and says as he writes up the report "OK let me guess you
were driving along at exactly the speed limit on your own side of the road
minding your own business at exactly the speed limit when the deer jumped
out in front of you and you had no way to avoid it?". "Yessir" says I.
Turning to the butcher in the ditch, he says "sir I have to take down your
name in case anyone sees the carcass hanging in your garage and tries to
report you for hunting out of season." The guy in the ditch stands up to
introduce himself and proffers his forearm to shake hands, however said
forearm being thoroughly covered in blood, the officer declines. He then
informs me that he previous November, there had been 60 deer accidents at
that intersection. The nanny found this all quite a new Canadian
experience..... This time the my employer decided they would not fix the
car, or at least, just fix it enough to drive it, as the term was almost up
on the lease. To the delight of casual onlookers parked beside me while
waiting for the lights to change, my colleague had written in indelible
marker on the crunched front right corner: "Oh Deer".
#4. I was employed by HP, who self-insured their company cars, and had just
taken a mandatory but very cool driver training course run by former Indy
500 drivers. This was all about keeping your head up, not being afraid to
slam the brakes on hard if you need to, and steering where you want to go.
That evening, driving home from work and with my nodding-off step daughter
as a passenger, I was thinking to myself what I might do now should a deer
jump out in front of me, given my new found skills. Just then, one did! I
dutifully slammed on the brakes, looked where I wanted to go, and steered
hard right then left, whereupon the snoozing girl awoke with a start to see
what was the matter....almost avoided it, just hit it with the front left
corner, smashing the lens of the light, but it could have been worse fer
sure. Good thing - it was my own car!
#5 and #6 - glancing blows, not much damage, I think I lost a mirror, a
headlight, and a windshield.
6a. My daughter had a deer run into the side of the Mazda pickup she was
driving, tearing off the mirror, but otherwise no damage. This I thought
was a Good Thing, for a teenager/new driver to have a close encounter of
the deer kind without getting hurt or doing any significant damage to the
vehicle. A Life Experience.
#7. Driving home from the city, possibly in 2007, on a divided highway, in
a brand new company car, I was slowing to exit to the right when a deer ran
out from the grassy area between the two sections of road, and I hit it
Most Excellently. It flew above the car and landed on the shoulder behind
me. This accident featured a first for me: the air bag explosion. I did see
the deer looking right at me at the last second, but was immediately
distracted by what could have been the sun exploding, followed by what I
thought was the smell of gunpowder. Startled!....I coasted over to the
shoulder. After a few seconds I regained my composure and thought it might
be wisest to stay outside the vehicle, given the intensity of the fumes in
the passenger compartment. I got out and surveyed the situation, noticing
that the front hood had been relocated rearward about four inches, the
bumper was hanging off, the front left fender was completely destroyed, the
deer was deceased, and I was getting pretty chilly, it being November. I
had left the car running, can't recall why, but after a bit I thought I
would sit in the car to warm up. I got back in the car and for the first
noticed a blinking light on the dash that said "Check Headlamp". The
insurance company wrote off. It took the police officer quite some time to
get there, and when he did, he told me this was the fifth deer hit he had
attended to that evening. (Ford Taurus - or equivalent that year.)
Be careful....particularly, in November.
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