With the start of deer hunting season — and deer mating season — many Iowa motorists may soon be having close encounters with the scampering creatures. Triple-A-Iowa spokeswoman Dawn Duffy has some advice for drivers, though it might be a challenge to ignore your instincts to brake and swerve. Duffy says “don’t veer for deer” as you might lose control by jerking the steering wheel, or you might hit another car, a utility pole or something else. Generally, she says, it’s better to hit the deer. One way to avoid a collision is to stay vigilant. Duffy says that means staying alert and avoiding distractions while driving. Duffy says to give yourself plenty of distance between your car and the cars around you, travel at a safe speed and a speed within the limits, and keep watch for potential obstacles in and around the road ahead, including deer. She says don’t be fooling with items in the car, eating, grooming or messing with the cell phone — keep your eyes on the road.Duffy says it’s expected that as October and November approach, deer-vehicle collisions increase dramatically. In the year 2000, there were 78-hundred deer-vehicle crashes in Iowa, resulting in 600 injuries and three deaths.