Page last updated at 13:49 GMT, Tuesday, 20 October 2009 14:49 UK

Drivers warned to watch for deer

Deer tend to move around at dawn and dusk when there can be a lot of traffic

Drivers in the Borders and south of Scotland are being warned to watch out for deer on the road.

This time of year is the peak time for such collisions; the autumn rut is under way and animals tend to move to breeding grounds at dawn or dusk.

Lothian and Borders Police said drivers must watch their speed and be aware that if one deer crosses the road others are likely to follow.

There are more than 10,000 deer-related accidents every year in Scotland.

The Deer Commission Scotland (DCS) said those accidents on average cause about 70 serious human injuries and two to three deaths.

The cost of these accidents is said to be about £5m.

Jamie Hammond, deer officer for the DCS, said: "Accidents are particularly high now, because dusk and the peak commuting times coincide.

"Deer are more likely to be feeding near or on road verges at this time. We urge motorists to slow down and watch for deer crossing in front of traffic."

Mr Hammond said people think most accidents with deer occur on remote Highland roads, when in fact, 70% occur on trunk roads or motorways.

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