Deer warning for local roads

Several hotspots for deer have been identified around the M74 and drivers are being warned to stay vigilant.
Several hotspots for deer have been identified around the M74 and drivers are being warned to stay vigilant.

Drivers in Carluke and Lanark are being warned to look out for deer wandering on to trunk roads and motorways, particularly during May.

Accidents involving deer peak at this time of year, as young deer disperse and increasingly cross major roads to look for their own territories and Scotland TranServ has identified hot spots around the M74 between Hamilton and Douglas.

Dr Jochen Langbein, who oversees the Deer Vehicle Collisions Project, said: “Many people think most accidents with deer and vehicles occur on more remote Highland roads, but in Scotland at least 40 percent occur on A-class trunk roads or motorways, including across much of South West Scotland’s road network.”

There is no system for the central recording of road accidents involving deer, but figures collated from a number of studies suggest that while around 40,000 deer are killed in vehicle strikes every year, this could be as high as 70,000 across the UK, with as many as 1000 people injured.

Tommy Docherty, Scotland TranServ’s Network Control Centre Manager, added: “Our teams are particularly busy at this time of year, tackling the aftermath of deer collisions; not only the loss of life of this beautiful native animal, but the damage to cars and injuries to drivers and passengers. It can be very distressing having to attend such incidents.

“Their main function is to keep the road safe, but often they need to contact animal welfare experts directly for them to put the injured deer out of its misery.”