Forty two per cent of Mayo drivers surveyed have run over a pet

The AA is reminding motorists driving on rural routes this summer to keep an eye out for all creatures great and small having learnt through their latest motor insurance poll that approximately four out of 10 drivers in Ireland have run over a pet or other non domesticated animal at some point while driving. Out of 248 motorists in Mayo polled, 42.9 per cent have run over a pet or an animal.

Man’s poor old best friend topped the AA’s Motor Insurance poll as the animal most likely to fall foul of traffic. After this, cats were identified as the second most common animal to be knocked down by motorists, something which comes as little surprise to AA Patrols who are frequently called to free cats that have trapped themselves under the wheel arches and engine bays of Members’ cars.

Worryingly the AA reports that it’s not just small animals that motorists are hitting in this country. 127 of those polled during the AA Motor Insurance survey indicated they had struck a sheep, 118 a deer, 83 a cow, 34 a horse and 15 a donkey.

“It’s not only conservation that drivers need to worry about when it comes to keeping their eyes peeled for animals when driving in rural settings or known animal habitats.” Says John Farrell, Director of AA Insurance, “A collision with a larger animal such as a horse or deer, particularly when travelling at high speeds can lead to a huge amount of damage, serious injury and even fatalities.

The AA’s advice to motorists is to slow down and proceed with caution if they see live stock or other large animals on or near the road. They also encourage motorists to be extra vigilant where animal crossing signs are in place and to avoid throwing food, likely to entice animals, out of their car windows.

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