The danger posed by animals to motorhome enthusiasts has been brought into sharp focus by a report from a leading motor caravan insurance company.
Although most people would only associate danger to motorists from animals deriving from a trip abroad or to a safari park, in fact 8 motorists died last year on the roads of the UK due to an accident involving an animal, an increase of 800% on the previous year. The danger is particularly relevant to mobile home users as by far the most dangerous encounters are those that involve deer. And of course the animals are usually found in rural areas often frequented by campers exploring the countryside. Incredibly motor insurance experts reckon over 450 people are injured each year due to motor accidents involving deer and the carnage becomes apparent when the same experts calculate that 40,000 deer die each year after being hit by vehicles.
One would imagine that a mobile home would be big enough to protect its occupants from danger with collisions from animals but one must remember that deer, sheep and cattle are all big animals and a sudden impact with any of them will almost certainly cause a driver to veer across or off the road, and that is where the danger lies. In fact the AA, who collated the report, says they received 30 claims in November alone for incidents involving, deer, foxes, badgers and dogs. Of course dark mornings and dusk are the most dangerous times and the Highway Code requests the farming fraternity to desist from herding cattle or sheep after dusk.
It is not only big, heavy animals that can cause damage. Motorhome insurance providers have received claims in the past from drivers stung by wasps who then lost control of their vehicle, and the AA report includes the case of a lady driving an open topped sports car who suddenly found a squirrel in her passenger seat. The lady was so taken aback by her uninvited guest that she lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a roadside tree causing over £5,000 of damage and more than a little embarrassment!