LONDON, Oct. 14 (Xinhua) -- Motorists in Britain's England were warned Friday to be on the look-out for amorous deer during the forthcoming mating season.
The three months to December are considered a high-risk period with thousands of wild deer on the move during the animal's mating season.
Highways England and charity, the Deer Initiative, joined forces Friday to alert motorists to the heightened risk of collisions involving deer at this time of year.
Across Britain it is estimated that there could be up to 74,000 deer-related motor vehicle accidents this year alone, resulting in 400 to 700 human injuries and 20 deaths.
The combined economic impact of injury accidents and car damage, involving deer, says Highways England, is likely to exceed 60 million U.S.dollars during the year.
"October through to December is considered a high-risk period as deer will be on the move for the autumn mating season, also known as the rut. The highest risk of a deer-vehicle collision is between sunset and midnight, and the hours shortly before and after sunrise," said a Highways England spokesman.
Tony Sangwine, senior environmental adviser at Highways England, said: "Deer are highly active at this time of the year, meaning they can suddenly appear on the road, at both dawn and dusk."
"With most deer movement coinciding with key commuting hours, we are urging drivers to be more aware so that they can complete their journeys on our roads safely and without incident."
Around 1.5 million deer live wild in Britain.
Highways England has advised drivers to be prepared to stop, trying not to suddenly swerve to avoid a deer. Hitting oncoming traffic or another obstacle could be even worse, the advisors say.
The Deer Initiative said: "Deer related traffic accidents have a considerable impact and present one of the main causes of mortality among wild populations of deer. They pose a major animal welfare issue because a high proportion of deer which are hit by cars are not killed outright. Many have to be put down at the roadside, while others escape to die later of their injuries.
"They pose a safety hazard to road users, and lead to substantial damage to cars and numerous human injuries as well as a number of human fatalities."