22 June 2020

NRMA Insurance is urging drivers to take extra care on the roads this winter with claims data revealing that animal-related collisions peak during June, July and August and that over 85% of animal collisions on New South Wales (NSW) roads involve kangaroos.

NRMA Insurance claims data shows there were over 13,000 collisions involving animals in 20191.

NRMA Insurance Research Specialist Chris Emerson is warning NSW drivers to keep a lookout for wildlife, particularly with many Australians taking to the roads this weekend.

“As travel restrictions ease and people are eager to head out of town to see our beautiful state, drivers are reminded to stay alert at all times, take note of any signage about local wildlife and slow down, particularly if driving at dawn and dusk,” Mr Emerson said.

“Animals are unpredictable and can appear out of nowhere, so it’s important to slow down and be aware of your environment especially when you’re driving on roads that aren’t familiar. Colliding with a kangaroo is not only traumatic for the driver and the animal, it also causes considerable damage to cars and can also result in serious injury.”

City drivers that may be less experienced or drivers that are unfamiliar with country roads should be extra cautious as the majority of animal collisions occur on country roads.

“How you react when you see a kangaroo on the road can potentially save lives, so it’s important to remain vigilant. If you see an animal on the road while driving, try to brake, but don’t swerve to avoid it because you could collide with another car,” Mr Emerson said.

NRMA Insurance safety advice for NSW drivers:

  • Take extra caution on the roads. If you can, avoid driving at dawn, dusk or night-time as this is usually when animals are most active, and lack of light makes it more difficult to see them
  • Reduce your speed inside sign posted wildlife areas
  • If you see a kangaroo on or near the road, you should try and brake, but not swerve to avoid a collision
  • If you hit an animal and safety permits, you should try to help by moving it to the side of the road to prevent further crashes and then contact a local veterinarian or wildlife rescue centre such as WIRES on 1300 094 737.

2019 animal collision hotspots in NSW

NSW hotspots Number of animal collisions in 2019
1 Dubbo 236
2 Armidale 162
3 Mudgee 136
4 Goulburn 132
5 Muswellbrook 111

1 Based on 2019 NRMA Comprehensive Car Insurance claims data.

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