A young deer was struck by a car on Highway 101 in Taft shortly after 1 p.m. Thursday, prompting a man to restrain and pet the animal until it died.
A Lincoln City Police officer stood by the man, who held down the deer as it struggled to get up, which might have caused another accident and further injured it. The officer called for backup so the deer could be moved safely from the middle of the highway.
LCPD Sgt. Jeffrey Winn arrived within minutes, unsure if he would need to dispatch the animal, but the deer had already died from its injuries.
The pair of law enforcement officers gently carried the deer to the side of the road and laid it in the grass. A City of Lincoln City worker would come shortly to take the deer away.
According to Oregon’s Department of Fish and Wildlife and Oregon Department of Transportation, 7,000 deer are hit each year in Oregon, resulting in $44 million in economic losses. Deer-to-vehicle collisions account for 700 injuries and two deaths. Oregon drivers have a one in 254 chance of hitting a deer while driving. The highest number of accidents are between October-November and May-June when deer are migrating to their seasonal ranges.
For more information about what is being done to solve the problem, check out this website: To the Other Side: Barriers to mule deer range connectivity