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Critical Issues - DVC Reduction Research and Data Collection. Keith K. Knapp UW-Madison Deer-Vehicle Crash Information Clearinghouse 2005 Fall Meeting Madison, WI October 24-25, 2005. PRESENTATION CONTENT. Research: Deer-Vehicle Crash Countermeasure Toolbox

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Critical issues dvc reduction research and data collection

Critical Issues - DVC Reduction Research and Data Collection

Keith K. Knapp


Deer-Vehicle Crash Information Clearinghouse

2005 Fall Meeting

Madison, WI

October 24-25, 2005

Presentation content

  • Research: Deer-Vehicle Crash Countermeasure Toolbox

    • Objective and Content

    • General Findings, Category Conclusions, and General Recommendations (Safety Focus)

  • Data Collection: Regional Data Management and Information Survey

    • Recall Objectives

    • Conclusions and Concerns

    • Recommendations

The toolbox

  • Objective: Provide Detail Needed to Support/Defend DVC Countermeasure Application Decisions and Choices

  • Current Knowledge Related to DVC Reduction Effectiveness

  • Exec. Summary and Three Chapters

  • 16 Countermeasures Considered

The countermeasures

Noise/Sound/Whistle Devices


Deer-Flagging Models

Deer Crossing Signs

Intercept Feeding

Speed Limit Reduction

Highway Lighting


Deicing Salt Alternatives

In-Vehicle Technologies


  • Roadside Vegetation Management

  • Hunting or Herd Reduction

  • Exclusionary Fence

  • Roadway Development Decisions/Policies

  • Public Information and Education

  • Wildlife Crossings

General findings

  • Multitude of “References” (500+)

  • Comparably Few Valid, and Well Designed and Documented Studies

  • Many Conflicting or Inconclusive Research Results

    • Variability and/or Validity of Data and Approach

    • Time, Area, and Dollars

General findings cont

  • Definitive Studies of Countermeasure DVC-Reduction Effectiveness are Rare

  • One Common Solution Unlikely

  • Work Required to Match/Focus Measure(s) to Locations

  • Definitively Exclude/Include Widely Used Measures, and Properly Evaluate New Measures Upfront

Countermeasure categories

Deer Whistles

Roadside Reflectors/Mirrors

Speed Limit Reduction

Signs and Sign Technology

Hunting and Herd Reduction

Roadside Vegetation Management

In-Vehicle Technologies

Deicing Salt Alternatives

Public Information and Education

Roadway Maintenance, Design, and Planning Policies


10 of 16 Measures Used but Rarely/Never Been Studied or with Conflicting Results:

Categories cont

2 of 16 Measures Used with Generally Positive Results:

  • Exclusionary Fencing

  • Wildlife Crossings

    4 of 16 Measures Not Generally Used but Rarely Studied:

  • Roadway Lighting

  • Deer-Flagging Models

  • Intercept Feeding

  • Repellents (on Roadways)

Categories cont1

  • AASHTO Safety Plan Strategy Categories

    • “Experimental”

    • “Tried”

    • “Proven”

  • Concluded all But 2 DVC Countermeasures were “Experimental” or “Tried”

  • Fencing and Crossing Safety Analysis Work also Stills Need Improvement

General recommendations

  • Measures Used with Conflicting Results and “Tried” - Definitively Determine Positive/Negative Safety Impacts

  • Measures Used with Positive Results and Generally “Proven” - Apply Currently Accepted Standards of Safety Data Analysis and Answer more Detailed Application Questions

Recommendations cont

  • Measures Used but Rarely Studied and “Tried” - Proper Study of Effectiveness (Replicate and Improve on Past Limited Evaluations)

  • Measures Used but Rarely Studied and “Experimental” - Pilot Study Application with Currently Accepted Standards of Safety Data Analysis

Recommendations cont1

  • Measures Used but Not Studied and “Tried” or “Experimental” - Initial Evaluations and/or Pilot Study Applications Required

  • Measures Not Generally Used but Rarely Studied and “Experimental - Proper Evaluation at a Pilot Study Level to Refute/Confirm Previous Individual Study Results

Regional survey objectives

  • Share DVC-Related Data Characteristics and Collection/Management Procedures Used by Individual States with DVCIC Partners and Beyond

  • Allow Proper DVC-Related Data Comparisons Between and Within States

  • Allow Proper DVC-Related Data Combinations within Region Annually and from Year to Year within States

Survey conclusions

  • Annual Deer Population Estimates done Pre- or Post-Hunt at DMU or County Level

  • DNRs Rarely Consulted on Roadway Planning Projects about Animal/Vehicle Conflicts

  • DNR Officers and Others Issue/Record Carcass Salvage/Possession Permits

  • A Few Combine/Summarize Permits and Removals if Data is Collected as Estimate of “Actual” DVCs (Some Also Collect Location)

Survey conclusions cont

  • For Most States Carcass Removal is Primarily a State and Local DOT Job - Done When Needed, but Usually not Recorded

  • “Reported” DVC often Means Something Different to DNR and DOT

  • DNRs Typically Not Consulted about Deer Crossing Sign Locations

  • Similar Issues Occur Nationwide

Dvc data concerns

  • Typical PDO Data Characteristics

    • Under-Reporting

    • Specificity of Location

    • Different Minimum Reporting Thresholds

  • Relevant Database Locations

    • Intra-agency

    • Interagency

    • Interdisciplinary

    • Public, Private, and Non-Profit

    • Federal, State, County, and Local

Dvc data concerns cont

  • Poor Documentation of Data/Terminology in “DVC” Summaries and Research

  • For Example in Past Reports:

    • “DVC” = “Roadkill” Observed, Roadside Permit Numbers, and Officially Reported Crashes

    • These are NOT Equal in Magnitude or Location

  • Possible that “Best” Data is not Generally Collected/Recorded by Location

  • Lack of Species-Specific Crash Input

Dvc data concern impacts

  • Definition of Overall Problem and Problem Locations

  • Spatial and Temporal Combinations and Comparisons

  • Understandability and Usefulness of DVC Safety Research Results

  • The “What” and “Where” Questions of Implementation


  • Continue to Encourage Activities that Increase Reporting and Locational Accuracy

  • Properly Define Available DVC-Related Databases Statewide, Regionally, and Nationally

  • Properly Document Magnitude, Trends, and/or Location of DVC Problem Statewide, Regionally, and/or Nationally

Recommendations cont2

  • Encourage Quality Control of Standard DVC Countermeasure Research and its Documentation

  • Pilot Study Collection/Recording of Roadside Carcass Locations - Compare to Reported DVCs

  • Encourage DVC Countermeasure Implementation and Monitoring by Multidisciplinary Teams

Questions and discussion
Questions and Discussion