According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, early fall is the normal breeding season for moose in Northern New York. This means many moose are wandering, on the hunt for potential mates, and they could end up on roads.
The DEC says they mainly travel at dawn and dusk, and can be tough to see because of their dark fur.
How to avoid a moose collision
- Use extreme caution when driving at dawn or dusk, especially during September and October
- Reduce your speed, stay alert, and watch the roadsides
- Slow down when approaching moose standing near the roadside, as they may bolt at the last minute when a car comes closer, often running into the road
- Moose may travel in pairs or small groups, so if a moose is spotted crossing the road, be alert for others that may follow
- Make sure all vehicle occupants wear seatbelts and children are properly restrained in child safety seats
- Use flashers or a headlight signal to warn other drivers when moose are spotted near the road
- Motorcyclists should be especially alert for moose
- If a moose runs in front of your vehicle, brake firmly but do not swerve
- Swerving can cause a vehicle-vehicle collision or cause the vehicle to hit a fixed object such as a tree or pole
- If a moose is hit and killed by a vehicle, do not remove the animal unless a permit is obtained from the investigating officer at the scene of the crash
If your vehicle collides with a moose, it could do much more damage to your vehicle than if you were to collide with a deer. The DEC says no drivers in New York have died because of a collision with a moose.
The DEC also reminds people that they are encouraged to enjoy wildlife from a distance, and should never approach animals like a moose, who may be very protective of their young.