Parks encourage road safety when bison roam
CUSTER STATE PARK, S.D. — With temperatures cooling down, and mating season being over, drivers may be more likely to see bison on park roads. So, caution is being recommended.
Park officials say more commuters are driving through the park at night due to the time change, and it is vital to be aware and safe.
Bison, although very large, are difficult to see in the dark, and once they are seen, it may still be too late.
“They are free roaming, so they can go anywhere,” said CSP Visitor Services Program Manager, Kobee Stalder. “So we advise visitors to use extreme caution when they’re traveling late at night or early in the morning because we could have bison on the roadway. I know I‘ve been leaving the park late at night, and I‘ve come across bulls a time or two on the road, and it’s terrifying. You really don’t see them until you’re right up on them.”
The speed limit at Custer State Park is 35 MPH, and at Wind Cave National Park between 35 and 45 MPH.
Officials hope visitors will be especially cautious when it gets dark.
Both parks say they may seek restitution for each animal killed if the the driver was found to be negligent.