A police officer in Kentucky did everything right when he spotted a deer on a collision course with his cruiser over the weekend. He kept his car under control, applied his brakes and, most importantly, didn't panic. Unfortunately, his cool head and sensible precautions weren't enough to avoid a crash.

Officer Pittaluga of the Kenton County Police Department was driving down Decoursey Pike Road through Visalia, KY when he ran into the deer. Or, rather, the deer ran into him. The force of the collision sent the deer spinning into the air and over Pittaluga's police cruiser. The buck shook off the impact and bounded into some near by woods.

Kenton County Police posted the dashboard camera video to their Facebook, with some very tongue in cheek commentary about the deer's acrobatics. Though everything turn out alright in this instance, deer hits are dangerous. Deer are responsible for about 150 roadway fatalities every year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. With the holidays coming up, many people will be traveling in unfamiliar areas. It's important to know how to handle a deer on the road.

Here are a few tips for keeping yourself safe.

1. Deer travel in herds - If you see one deer munching on greens near a road, assume that there are more lurking just beyond the tree line. Drive with extreme caution.

2. Deer like dusk and dawn - They're most active in the hours after dawn and before sunset, exactly when they're the most difficult to see. Exercise caution and use your headlights in low light.

3. Drive defensively - If you spot a deer, stay calm. Keep your hands on the wheel, and hit the brakes. Do not swerve, but if you must, do it in a controlled manner while braking. Aim for the shoulder, rather than incoming traffic.

4. Hit the deer - In a no-win scenario, it's safer to hit the deer than colliding with another car or a telephone pole.


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