ADVICE has been given to motorists in the New Forest as rise in crashes involving animals is expected.

Police in the area have said that there is normally a rise at this time of year in crashes involving animals including deer, horses and ponies.

Poor driving conditions are said to contribute to the number of animal deaths in the New Forest each year.

Now though, advice has been given to motorists travelling in the area if an animal is hit.

If a driver sees an animal injured at the roadside, they are being asked to pull over safely, call police, give as precise location as possible and do not try to assist or move the animal.

Motorists that have hit an animal themselves are being asked to keep themselves and anyone with them as safe as possible, park the car in the safest place with hazard lights on, call an ambulance if required for any injuries sustained in the crash and call police.

If the animal is still alive and visable, the advice given is to not approach as it may cause it to run across traffic.

It is also said that motorists should not attempt to move or handle live deer and instead let a trained specialist do this.

Again drivers are asked to call police, giving a location as they will be able to send specialist officers.

A police spokesperson added: "Often, poor driving conditions such as heavy rain or driving late at night and / or early morning during winter months, sadly contribute to the many deaths of deer, horses and ponies in the New Forest each year.

"In addition, deer are at high-risk of being disturbed by members of the public when visiting the New Forest, often meaning that they flee from the area and scatter into the road – where they are likely to be struck by passing cars."