The e-mails are in from Sunday’s column on deer-vehicle collisions.
Gloria Ward of Talihina has had more than her share of deer accidents.
“My husband said I had to write to you about my deer experiences. I use the word experiences, because over the past 14 years I have hit four of them.
“I used to drive from Talihina to Hartshorne to work everyday for 12 years. My co-workers and students gave me the nickname of deer killer. They would ask every week if I had seen or hit any deer on my way to work. My friend bought me four deer chasers for the front of my car and a tag that said ‘Watch out, deer killer.’
“The closest deer I hit was only 2 miles from my house. I was driving out just outside of Talihina when I hit the deer and did about $1,200 in damage. My worse wreck was when I swerved to miss a huge deer at the top of the mountain at the Hartshorne to Wilburton turn off.
“When I went off the road, my steer broke and I lost total control of the car. I did a 180 spin on the top of the hill on a curve. I then went off the side of the road on two wheels. I missed the deer, but it cost me over $2,500 for the damage to my car.
“This does not cover the cost of the damage to my body from the wreck. I almost got a ticket for not having control of my car also. I had to talk the cop out of writing me a ticket. I felt good for not hitting the deer, but he said I should of hit it anyway.
“My other two wrecks were minor with only little damage to the bumper and window. I did not kill any of the deer I hit, except one. We did not get the meat for any of them, which I think is wrong since they did so much damage to my car and me.
“My husband keeps telling me to stop swerving and just hit the deer. It does less damage to the car and myself. I just want to stop hitting them.
“I hope you enjoy my stories, because now I think they are funny; but at the time they were scary.”
Former Hydbro police officer Sterling Moeller shared this story:
“A few years back, I was traveling a rural road in Caddo County. I saw the first doe cross the road and was watching her, completely forgetting that they usually aren’t alone. That’s when the other larger doe met the front of the S-10 pickup. About $1,200 later it was running as good as new.
“While I was police officer in Hydro, I got a call for a deer/vehicle accident on the south side of town. When I arrived, I didn’t notice any damage to the front of the truck. That’s when the driver told me that the deer hit them.
“She made a rather large dent on the passenger side of the truck with her head. After contacting the local game warden, he told me to go ahead and dispatch the deer myself.
“As far as your tips to help avoid hitting deer goes, I have another that I have found to be quite useful. During the night time driving, dim the interior dash lights to just where you still see the speedometer. This will reduce the glare on the inside of the windshield, making seeing outside the vehicle much easier.”
Jeanna Halsey of Guthrie also had a run-in with a doe:
“I live five miles west of Guthrie and my friends and I take turns driving to Kingfisher for water aerobics twice a week. It was my turn to drive and I had two other ladies with me in my 2008 Cadillac DTS. I was driving on SH 33 toward Kingfisher and was about a mile west of the Cashion road exit when a doe ran into the side of my car and knocked the driver’s side mirror completely off and dented the driver’s side of the car, including the window.
“My car had about 3,500 miles on it and it cost $1,875.68 to repair it. My friend, Jane Barriman, saw the deer coming. I didn’t. I pulled over and she called 911 and then was cut off after just a little conversation because that is a dead zone for cell phones. We came back to my house and called the sheriff’s office.
“They had heard part of the call before it was cut off and were looking for us. The game ranger was going to check on the deer that ended up on the side of the road. She came out near a creek with lots of trees on both sides. Needless to say, we drive slower in that area now and two of us now have deer whistles on our cars.”
John Coley banged into a doe in Oklahoma City:
“I was on the way to work about five years ago. It was about 6:40am on Morgan Road. near SW 29. It was late fall and still dark at that hour. The deer (it was a doe) leaped over the fence along side the road and right in front of my car.
“There was no time for braking or swerving. I could only hang on and brace for the impact. I was driving a ’89 Mercury Cougar so I was in a good size car but the hood folded up and the front end exploded from the car.
“The impact killed the deer and threw it several yards into the opposite ditch. I still had a couple of parking lights still working so I limped my car a few blocks to work. In the light of day I found pieces of deer hide imbedded in the front end of my wrecked car. With deer, sometimes there is no time to avoid them. They just appear in front of you.”
Phil Owens agrees. It’s best not to swerve to miss a deer:
“I saw your story and it brought back memories of my experience with a large mule deer doe seven miles east of Gunnison, Colo.
“It was about 10 at night and I was headed to Ridgeway to go elk hunting. She actually hit me as much as I hit her as she was running across the road.
“Your advice to not swerve is correct as I was going 70 and I swerved and had my truck up on two wheels for a short distance. I was very lucky that I did not roll my truck!! I had $3,800 in damage but was able to finish my hunt and fortunately harvested a bull and cow.”
And this from Maggie Green:
“I was not on a lonely road in the country nor on a major highway. I was on 122nd and Portland Avenue at about 5:30 p.m. one fall evening in 2002.
“Out of the corner of my eye I could see a deer approaching but there was no way to avoid it. I was headed east on 122nd and to steer to the left put me in oncoming traffic and to steer right put me closer to the deer and there were cars approaching from my rear as well.
“So I decided I would take on Bambi. She hit my car on the right passenger door near the the rear-view mirror. All I could see was this brown eye-ball on my front glass. Of course, I was fit to be tied, pulled to the side of the road and searched frantically for the carcass so at least I could have venison for dinner.
“She had bounced off and ran back where she came from, which was a small, wooded area near the intersection (this was before the new John Marshall was completed). I could see the deer hiding behind some trees. She was wounded but still mobile and able to run.
“I wanted to at least beat the thing down and take it home for supper. However, that was not to be as other motorists called the police. I called my brother-in-law, an avid hunter, to come help me at which point the policeman told me to just let it go, deer hunting season had not started yet, so I did.”