Train Collision Kills 58 Deer

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Heavy winter snows are being blamed for the killing of 58 deer on the railroad tracks between Dietrich and Owinza Monday.

Idaho Department of Fish and Game responded to the accident after being called by railroad employees from Shoshone.

"We don't know whether the deer were heading south from the heavy snows or if they had been bedded down on the tracks," said Gary Hompland, Fish and Game Regional Conservation Officer. "All we know is when we reached the area 55 deer were dead and three were badly injured and had to be killed."

"The carcasses were smash up so severely and there was no way to salvage the meat," he said. "

The remains of the deer were removed from the tracks and left for scavengers.

It is common to have deer or antelope collisions along this section of railroad tracks on years with heavy snow, but this is one of the largest in several years.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game would like to remind travels to drive with caution when traveling on traditional mule deer winter ranges throughout the region.

"As the snow continues and winter weather surrounds us mule deer, elk and antelope will continue to move to areas with less snow," said Hompland. "As they move into these more populated areas it increases the chance for auto accidents."