A suburb in the City of Rockingham has been revealed as the the State’s worst hotspot for collisions with wildlife, new research from AAMI has found. It also revealed while about half of Aussies have hit wildlife while driving, the vast majority — 61 per cent — admit they would swerve or slam on the brakes to avoid hitting an animal. The insurer analysed more than 17,000 animal collision claims nationally throughout 2022 and found Baldivis is the worst suburb in WA when it comes to hitting wildlife on the roads. Baldivis is a semi-rural area with a rapidly growing population and the city projects it will grow an additional 80 per cent by 2046 — meaning more vehicles on the roads and an increased likelihood of wildlife-related road incidents in the area. Rural roads were twice as likely to see animal collisions at a rate of 31 per cent, compared to suburban roads at 15 per cent. In WA, Friday was identified as the most common day for collisions and midnight the most common time of day. Winter was identified as the worst time of the year for incidents nationally, with one in three accidents involving wildlife occurring between June and August. “The darker winter months are the most perilous time for wildlife on our roads,” Wildlife information, rescue and education service’s Kristie Newton said. “Hitting wildlife can not only cause vehicle damage and emotional distress for the driver involved, but also the loss of native animals, which has a huge impact on Australia’s biodiversity and endangered species.” While midnight was most common for WA drivers, dusk was identified as the most dangerous time nationally for wildlife-related road accidents with more than a quarter of accidents taking place between 4.30pm and 8pm. AAMI head of motor claims Kahl Dwight warned motorists to stay vigilant. “Be extra vigilant particularly around dawn and dusk as this is when nocturnal animals are more active. Visibility also becomes poorer which makes it harder to see wildlife and reduces the time a driver has to react, increasing the risk of a collision,” he said. Mr Dwight said drivers should be prepared and know what to do if faced with a wildlife collision: “slow down and brake but avoid swerving so as not to endanger yourself and other drivers.” Insurance claims for wildlife collisions average between $5500 and $6400 and in 2022, one in seven claims resulted in damage so severe the car was written off. The most common animals involved are kangaroos, wallabies, wombats, dogs, deer and cows. “If you have hit an animal while driving, stop to check its welfare, but only if it is safe to do so. If the animal is alive and injured call WIRES or your local wildlife rescue service,” Ms Newton said. She also encouraged drivers to check the pouches of kangaroos, wombats and echidnas in case of any surviving offspring. In WA the top five worst wildlife collision hotspots are Baldivis, Nannup, Jurien Bay, Bullsbrook and Kalbarri. Heathcote in Victoria took out the unfortunate national title of Australia’s most dangerous spot for wildlife collisions.