The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is urging winter drivers to be moose-aware.

Officials say moose tend to use roadways for greater mobility and access to food, but they can be hard to see during the dark winter months. Combine traffic with huge animals on the roadway and the results can be deadly for both moose and drivers.

"Decreased visibility due to lack of daylight, icy roads, and moose movement patterns all contribute to the increased collision rates we see at this time of year," said Jeff Selinger, Fish and Game's Kenai area wildlife biologist.

Fish and Game officials say most car-moose crashes happen at dawn or dusk, when the animals are most active and the light makes it hard to see.

Some of the department's suggestions for keeping safe on the road include:

  • Keep your headlights and windshield clean.
  • Adjust your driving to fit road conditions.
  • Keep an eye out for moose by scanning the sides of the roadway.
  • If you see a calf know its mother is probably close by.
  • Be extra alert in areas with moose crossing signs.
  • Give yourself plenty of braking room between your car and the one in front of you.
  • Watch for flickering lights caused by a moose between you and the source.

If you are in a crash involving wildlife or see one, you are asked to call Alaska State Troopers. You can also contact Fish and Game during normal business hours online at the department's website. 

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