CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. - A 61-year-old Cherokee County man's first car accident ever involved quite an unruly passenger.
Jim Fedo said a full-sized deer leaped from a hill bordering Toonigh Road Wednesday, hitting a car, before going airborne and landing on his front windshield.
"The last thing I remember is it smashing through my windshield and landing in the passenger seat," Fedo said.
His dented metal gate, which acts as a barrier between the front seats and the back of his van, is proof for just how hard the deer kicked in a panic with Fedo inside. And while his vehicle took quite the beating, Fedo remarkably walked away only covered in deer fur and tiny shards of glass, largely unscathed.
He believes an angel had a hand in the outcome of the crash.
"My oldest brother, who just recently passed away, was by my side, yes by my side, and saved my life," Fedo said.
"I'm glad he's able to walk away, and be with us," said wife Denise Fedo. "We're blessed."
Cherokee County deputies said they've seen a recent uptick in the number of car crashes involving deer, and now are encouraging drivers to be especially vigilant on the roadways.
"I've lived here in Cherokee County for my entire life, [we used to not see] many deer, and now we're seeing them every day," said Capt. Jay Baker with the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office. "We respond to a deer accident I would say almost every single day."
While in some cases collisions are unavoidable, Baker said: 1) Watch your speed, 2) Brake but don't swerve, and 3) If you see one deer crossing, be prepared for more.