10 June 2018

With NRMA Insurance claims data showing kangaroos account for 83 per cent of all animal collisions on NSW roads, the insurer is urging drivers to be alert behind the wheel this long weekend.

The insurer’s claims data1 showed that winter is the riskiest time for crashes involving animals, with a spike in claims over June, July and August. The data also revealed NSW had the highest rate of animal collisions in the country with over 12,000 claims received, a nine per cent increase from 2016.

NRMA Insurance Research Director Robert McDonald warned NSW drivers to be on the lookout for wildlife, particularly with many Australians on the roads this long weekend.

“In winter, animals are on the move looking for food at sunrise and sunset and combined with cooler weather conditions and reduced visibility, the chances of hitting an animal are more likely. Wildlife is unpredictable and can appear out of nowhere, so it’s important to slow down and be aware of your environment.

“Colliding with a kangaroo is not only traumatic for both the animal and driver but often causes considerable damage to cars and can also result in serious injury.”

While the majority of animal collisions occur on country roads, city drivers should also remain vigilant.

“If you're on the road this weekend, we urge you to be mindful of wildlife on all roads, whether they are country highways or suburban streets. If you see an animal on the road, remember to try and brake but not swerve to avoid a collision,” Mr McDonald said.

Kangaroos still top the list of animals most likely to be involved in a road accident, followed by dogs, wombats, cattle and cats.

Animal collision hotspots in NSW

NSW hotspots Number of animal collisions in 2017
1 Dubbo 197
2 Mudgee 143
3 Goulburn 123
4 Muswellbrook 118
5 Orange 115

NRMA Insurance offers safety advice for NSW drivers this long weekend:

  • Be vigilant when driving at dawn, dusk or night-time as this is primarily when animals are most active
  • Reduce your speed inside sign posted wildlife areas
  • If you hit the animal and safety permits, you should try to help by moving it to the side of the road to prevent further crashes
  • Don’t force the animal to eat or drink and contact a local veterinarian or a wildlife rescue centre such as WIRES.

1 Based on 2017 NRMA Comprehensive Car Insurance claims data.

Media hotline number: 02 9292 9742.