DRIVERS are being given advice to help them to avoid hitting deer on the roads.

As daylight fades in the autumn, motorists are being told to take extra precautions so they do not hit the animals as they cross rural roads.

The advice, being promoted by East Sussex County Council, comes as the deer mating season takes place in October and November. The risk of encountering the animals is highest at dawn and dusk.

Councillor Claire Dowling, lead member for transport and environment, said: “We’re lucky in East Sussex to live in a largely rural county which provides an ideal habitat for deer.

“By following some simple tips, drivers can keep themselves safe and ensure these magnificent creatures can continue to roam freely and thrive in our beautiful countryside.”

Drivers are advised to slow down around warning signs and use full-beam headlights when other cars are not around.

The advice from The Deer Initiative also tells motorists that deer are creatures of habit.

Anyone who hits a deer should stay calm, park in a safe place with hazard lights on and call the police on 101, or 999 if someone is injured or the deer is in the road.