OXFORD TOWNSHIP (WXYZ) — A motorcyclist from Oxford Township was killed over the weekend after colliding with a turkey. It happened on Stoney Creek Road near Rochester Road in Oakland Township.
Spring season is riding season, and areas like Oakland Township boast the beautiful nature scene but wild turkeys can pose a danger for those on the roads.
The Oakland County Sheriff's Department says a 70-year-old man died in a freak accident after riding a motorcycle on Stoney Creek Road near Rochester Road when several turkeys crossed the street.
One of the turkeys took off, flying into the rider and hitting him in the chest, sending him into a guardrail.
“I’m surprised that he got hit by a turkey,” motorcyclist George Murphy said. “I’ve heard about accidents involving animals, this is the first time I’ve heard about a turkey.”
Murphy has been a rider for 17 years and says stories like this remind him to stay safe.
“Just be familiar with your surroundings," he said. "Just be aware and be prepared.”
Neighbors, like Christie Walker, believe more wildlife will be making their way on the roads.
“There are some construction and I think a lot of the animals are kind of being displaced right now,” she said.
According to motorcyclecruiser.com, helmets and protective gear are a must to help survive any crash.
If you see one animal on the side of the road like deer, chances are there are several more traveling in a group.
At night, use high beams or powerful lights. Revving your engine or honking your horn could drive the animal away.
If you can’t avoid a collision do not swerve, try to stabilize before making contact.
Murphy added, “If you’re not going to fast, you can just stop.”
We’re told the man was wearing a helmet and protective gear.