Moose and motor vehicles are involved in close to 250 accidents each year causing numerous injuries and even death to drivers and passengers.

Getty Images
Getty Images

If you've ever seen one of these animals up-close, you know how massive they are, and how much damage they could do to you and your vehicle, not to mention the moose.

This campaign was inspired by a request from Dr. Campbell McLaren, who is an emergency room physician at Littleton Regional Hospital. Dr. McLaren wanted authorities to come up with methods to help avoid vehicle-moose collisions.

NH Fish and Game have put together a 'Brake for Moose' campaign that has good information to keep in mind, including;

  • New Hampshire's moose herd is approximately 6,000 strong.

  • The average moose weighs 1,000 lbs.

  • Moose are hard to see at night. They are 6 feet tall at the shoulder and your headlights will often only reveal their legs, which are the same color as the pavement. Their height also means that if you hit one, the bulk of a moose will fall on your windshield and roof.

  • Don't count on seeing "eye shine." Moose eyes do reflect light, but your headlights won't reach that high.

  • From April to November, moose are very active and the highest numbers of moose-vehicle collisions occur. In spring, yearlings have just been separated from their mothers and are apt to show up anywhere at anytime. In fall, moose are on the move because it's their mating season.

  • Moose are attracted to salt licks caused by winter road management, so it is not surprising to see them on or very near the road.

Here are some driving tips from the campaign;

  •  Most collisions happen at dawn or dusk, but they can happen at any time of day. Stay alert!

  • Collisions occur statewide and on all types of roads, from highways to backroads.

  • Try not to drive faster than 55 mph. There is a strong correlation between speed and the severity of an accident.

  • Wear your seatbelt.

  • Scan the sides of the roads.

  • Use high beams whenever possible.

  • Don't count on moose stopping when they see you. They are very unpredictable. Stop the car if necessary and wait.

  • Be particularly attentive and drive slowly where moose road crossing signs are posted. But remember moose cross the road wherever they like!

  • Residents and visitors both love to see these New Hampshire denizens, so please make sure you take all necessary precautions when out on the roadways. Remember: Brake for Moose!

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