- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - A new call center operated by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is making it easier for motorists who kill deer in auto accidents to get a permit to keep the game meat.

Motorists previously were required to contact local police and wait for an officer to arrive and issue a permit before they could take the animal. Now the call center is able to issue permits to motorists who want to keep a roadkill carcass any time of day or night.

The law was changed in an effort to save time for both drivers and officers, especially when they’re busy with emergencies, Portage County Sheriff Mike Lukas told Stevens Point Journal Media (https://spjour.nl/1IphYzu ).

But drivers still have to contact police when a crash results in $1,000 or more in damage to the vehicle, Lukas said. Officers who respond to those accidents issue car-killed deer tags, the agency said.

Drivers who need tags for an accident involving a turkey or bear should still call local police.

The state Department of Natural Resources’ new system eliminates the need for an office to come to the scene when a tag isn’t needed.

The call line is staffed daily between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m., so when a motorist calls 608-267-7691 outside of those hours, he or she can leave a message with personal information and details of the crash. The motorist is then able to take the carcass.

Workers with the agency can issue the tags, which must be issued within 24 hours of taking the deer in compliance with state law, through a computer-generated system and then mail or email them to customers.

About 26,000 deer are killed by vehicles every year in Wisconsin, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.

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Information from: Stevens Point Journal Media, https://www.stevenspointjournal.com


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