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Deer @ Fermilab

Novemeber 29, 2018

Dear PONDD Participant,

In recent weeks, there has been an increase in near-miss accidents involving vehicles and deer.  Although Fermilab does its best to manage the population, this time of the year is deer mating season and they are much more active, especially at dawn and dusk.  In addition to this, the recent snow cover causes the deer to search for food in a wider area than they normally inhabit.  These two factors increase the probability that we will encounter deer while traveling around the site. 


Please exercise greater caution when traveling around site and along wooded areas at this time.  Scan a wider path when traveling throughout the site. Be aware that if you see one deer, there is usually another (or more) right behind it. If a deer pops out of nowhere right in front of you, human instinct is to slam on the brakes and swerve to avoid contact. In reality, this is the worst thing you can do. It results in many accidents (hitting trees, hitting other cars, rolling over in a ditch), some fatal (though none at Fermilab).  Just recently, a vehicle was traveling on-site in the early evening, swerved to miss a deer, and ended up hitting a tree.  If you need to apply your brakes aggressively, do your best to keep the steering wheel straight. 

If the unfortunate event results in a collision with a deer, contact Fermilab Emergency at +1-630-840-3131 immediately so site security can document the accident for insurance purposes and Roads and Grounds can search for the deer in case it has been injured. 


Thank you,

Kayla Decker

Directorate Administrator, Office of the Director

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