Animal collisions have increased by 15 per cent in the last calendar year according to new claims data from NRMA Insurance.
Kangaroos still top the list of animals most likely to be involved in a road accident, followed by dogs, wombats, cattle and cats.
NRMA Insurance spokesperson Mariana Cidade said kangaroo collisions peak in the winter months, particularly in July, posing a hopping hazard to drivers.
“We encourage motorists to slow down when driving at sunrise and sunset as this is when kangaroos are most active and looking for food.
“Kangaroo collisions can pose a significant safety risk as they can potentially smash a windscreen and injure drivers and their passengers.
“We urge motorists to try and stop if they see an animal on the road but not swerve to avoid a collision. How you react can potentially save lives,” said Ms Cidade.
While the majority of animal collisions occur on country roads, city drivers should also remain vigilant.
“We are urging drivers to be mindful of all wildlife on all roads, whether they are country highways or suburban streets.
“If you hit an animal on the road please report it to your local wildlife group, Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service (WIRES), or the Police,” Ms Cidade said.
NRMA Insurance offers the following advice for NSW drivers:
· If you see an animal on or near the road, you should try and brake, but not swerve to avoid a collision;
· Reduce your speed inside sign-posted wildlife areas;
· If you hit an animal, call WIRES on 1300 094 737. If there is a road hazard please also call the Police;
· If you stop to check on the animal please ensure you do so in a safe place, away from incoming traffic. Be mindful of your safety and that of other motorists;
· If you hit a kangaroo and you are certain it has died, check the pouch for joeys. WIRES can provide information on rescuing joeys;
NSW hotspots Number of animal collisions
1 Dubbo 178
2 Mudgee 124
3 Goulburn 124
4 Orange 111
5 Singleton 102
6 Broken Hill 90
7 Moree 84
8 Armidale 78
9 Tamworth 78
10 Muswellbrook 78
* Based on NRMA Comprehensive Car Insurance claims data for the 2012 calendar year.
NRMA Insurance operates in NSW, QLD, ACT and TAS as part of Insurance Australia Group (IAG). IAG is a fully diversified insurance group with operations throughout Australia, New Zealand, Asia and the United Kingdom. It underwrites around $7.8 billion of insurance premiums each year and employs more than 13,000 people.
P: 02 9292 9742