Oh, Deer.

Hunting season has been in full swing for several weeks, and scads of bow hunters have been tramping through the woods of my county for that long.  Rifle season just started in the last couple of days, and that has caused a lot of the deer population locally to be on the move.  Since we have an Interstate near us, there have been an uptick of sightings (and encounters) with deer going from point A to B crossing this busy thoroughfare.

This morning, when I arrived at work, my supervisor’s Nissan Rogue wasn’t there.  Usually if that’s the case, it means something ominous has happened.  He’s had a myriad of health care issues in the past 10 years that I’ve worked in his department, from heart to cancer.  Basically soup to nuts.  He’s pretty predicatable in his attendance, so if his car isn’t there, something’s amiss.

When I clocked in however, I spotted his jacket hanging up.  So, he’s (t)here, but his car isn’t?  The mystery was solved as I went to the department manager’s office to collect my morning reports.  He’s sitting at one of the computers, his back to me.  As soon as he saw me, he said he had a question for me.  Could he impose on me to give him a ride home?  Of course the answer is yes, he’s done a lot for me over the years, it’s the least I can do….which begged the question of why.

Well, he hit a deer this morning.  Doing 65 mph, and his car was to put it mildly, totaled.  Good fortune was on his side, or someone/something was keeping an eye on him as only the steering wheel air bag deployed and the deer basically exploded on impact.  He managed to limp the car to the side of the road and was able to call 9-1-1.  The dispatcher sent a deputy sherriff (who initially went to the wrong way, but managed to find him after turning around at the next town up the road) who was able to get a wrecker to the scene and even gave him a ride to work after the car was towed away.  So essentially he wasn’t even late.  (The guy goes in to work at least an hour early every shift, he’s been doing that for years.  Yea, I don’t get it either)

Over the course of the day, we talked more and more about the whole thing.  He disappeared for a few minutes around 10 and presented me with a $20 gift card to compensate me for my trouble.  Completely unnecessary, but I thanked him regardless.  I myself have had 2 run-ins with deer over the years, though neither of them were ever as devastating an accident like this.  One ran into my ’89 Ford Escort, and the other I grazed with my ’87 Ford Bronco II.  After work (I managed to get off 30 minutes early so he didn’t have to cool his heels waiting for my shift to end) we went down to the garage where he’d had the Rouge towed, to collect items from the car in case the insurance company decided to declare the vehicle totaled and not bother to repair it.  ‘Rob’ (not his real name) showed me the printout from the garage, they’d already done a detailed estimate of how much it would cost to completely repair the damage.  I about fainted.  $15,000.  Given the fact he had a head-on impact with a deer, it was more than likely the insurance company isn’t going to want to get into that.

Even just now I did a quick and dirty evaluation on how much the trade-in value of the vehicle would be (without the deer damage) and the Kelley Blue Book website suggested $6-8k at best.  So it’s more likely they’re going to take a pass on fixing it.  I’m sure I’ll hear about it when the decision is made.  Rob told me he’d like it to be fixed.  I don’t think it’s going to go his way, but time will tell.  After picking up his items, I got him home safe and sound.  We talked a bit more then parted ways.

At any rate, I’m just glad he’s ok.


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