TOPEKA (KSNT) – According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, data collected by KDOT shows that in 2021, six people were killed and 622 were injured in collisions involving a deer.

As deer mating season quickly approaches, Captain Candice Breshears joined the 27 News Morning show to speak about the increased risk of collisions involving deer this time of the year.

“This time of year, every year, we see an increase in car vs. deer collisions because it’s rut season,” Breshears said.

She said it’s extremely important that people stay vigilant while driving at all hours of the day so they don’t hit deer creeping into the roads.

“But, if a deer does come into the roadway, it’s really important that you know not to swerve to avoid that animal,” she said.

Breshears said people are much safer to go ahead and strike that animal.

“If you try and avoid it, your wheels might drop off the edge of the roadway or you might be more likely to overcorrect,” she said. “And if you overcorrect you can go into oncoming traffic or even roll your car onto the side of the road.”

Ultimately, Breshears said that people need to be hyper-aware of their surroundings. She said this also goes for harvest season, as more tractors will be out on the road.

“Make sure that you are giving room to those large farm implements,” she said. “They are more likely to be on the road this time of year, they’re slower moving vehicles and they’re a lot larger than passenger cars…and they can’t move over for cars.”

She encourages people to be patient with those tractors and to avoid passing them or getting up very close behind them.

“Put phones down, pay attention and make sure you’re not getting distracted,” Breshears said.

To wrap up the interview, Breshears mentioned numerous different positions that the KHP is hiring for at this time. If you’re interested in applying for employment or just want to see a full list of those open positions, click here.