Sioux Falls Deer Harvest Reduces Interstate Crashes
Hitting a deer with your vehicle at interstate speeds can be scary.
Dakota News Now reports that between 2013 and 2014, there were 128 deer vs vehicle collisions along I-229 and Rice Street.
In 2015 and 2016, the City of Sioux Falls began its annual deer removal process. The results were immediate. There 15 fewer crashes in harvest's first year and 86 fewer the following year.
"The years that we have been doing this program, the number of deer hit on those interstates and on the highways that we keep track of, the number has gone down," said Sioux Falls Animal Control Supervisor Julie DeJong. "We think it's really making a difference as far as making it safer on the roadways for our motorist."
The annual harvest in Sioux Falls has removed 48 deer so far this year with 22 remaining on this year's permit. DeJong says there are still many deer on the interior areas of the interstate.
The deer harvest has had been a direct impact on food banks in the community. The deer meat goes to Renner to be processed and redistributed. 1,500 pounds of meat was handled in 2019 and this year's workload strong.