If you've ever hit a deer, you know the
damage it can cause.
Savannah native is hoping a new version of an old product being introduced in
the United States will help cut down on deer-car collisions.
One U.S. city is already testing it out.
A siren, solar power reflectors to keep it
charged, and headlights. Those are the three basic working elements to the Deer
"It doesn't hurt the deer. It doesn't
scare them. It makes them aware of their surroundings. They hear the
siren, look up and stop in their tracks," said Michael Williamson, a Deer
Williamson lived in Savannah most of his
life and had plenty of deer related run-ins.
So, he bought into the Deer Deter technology,
which is just being introduced in the United States.
Europe has 10,000 units available. The U.S.
only has 1,000 units.
"It definitely has a need, especially
in south Georgia with all the deer," he said.
In recent weeks, WTOC has had calls and
emails about deer issues in nearby communities. Some people even have asked if
they are allowed to shoot the deer in their yard.
Williamson says Deer Deter could be a
solution to the problem.
"We found that neighborhood
associations could use it, small communities could use it and city and county
governments could use it," he said.
"When headlights hit one side of it, it
emits a blinking light and sound which would pause a deer that would otherwise
be intending to cross the road. Deer can still cross the road. They'll just be scared
when a car comes one way or the other," a park director with the city of
Mentor, Ohio, said in a Youtube video explaining their use of the system..
Mentor has been testing the Deer Deter
system since November. They've had 800 car vs. deer accidents since 2004 and
say so far the system seems to be working, but it is a three year commitment
Residents can buy Deer Deter, but Williamson
said it won't keep deer out of your yard.
"The only thing it will do is stop the
deer from crossing the roads," he said.
However, he also believes the investment,
versus the financial damage hitting a deer will do to your wallet, may be worth
"The repairs to someone's car, or
someone's life, is well worth the cost," he said.
city of Mentor told WTOC they have seen in one high incident area a noticeable
decrease in accidents involving deer. The deer seem to get used to the
system and stay off the road when they hear the Deer Deter siren.