Bell Deer Whistles Not Effective for Avoiding Collisions Class Action

Deer-warning devices are meant to help drivers avoid collisions with deer by producing sounds that alert deer to danger. But the complaint for this class action alleges that Bell Deer Warning Devices, made by Hopkins Manufacturing Corporation don’t do that—and don’t do much of anything at all.

The class for this action is all persons in the US who bought the deer whistles at issue.

Page 2 of the complaint shows an image of the devices in their packaging, with the words “Airflow activated,” “Produces dual-pitched sounds to alert nearby animals,” and “Helps reduce accidents.” The devices look like plastic tubes that are mounted on small stands and are significantly narrower at one end.

However, the complaint asserts that “the Devices are a sham…. They are ineffective and worthless.”

The plaintiff in this case, Thomas Haass, bought two packages of deer whistles at different times. Shortly after he bought the second package, the complaint alleges, he “collided with a deer in his car,” which was equipped with a deer whistle from his first purchase.

The complaint cites a peer-reviewed study that tested deer whistle and found no “differences in responses from 150 groups of free-roaming mule deer to a vehicle mounted with and without … warning whistles. The complaint quotes the study as saying that “deer in the road continued to travel in the direction they were headed…. Deer sometimes remained standing in the road, showing ‘no response’ and forcing us to slow the vehicle to avoid a collision. There were also occasions when deer crossed the road and then turned to run back in front of the vehicle…”

The study noted that the responses of the deer seemed to be the same, whether a deer whistle was being used or not.

Another university study quoted by the complaint said that “deer whistles are likely not effective in altering deer behavior along roadways to help prevent deer-vehicle collisions.”

The complaint also cites television reports, one of which it quotes as saying that deer do hear the whistles “but likely too late.” Another it quotes as saying they’re “not effective. Because, this time of year, the buck, or the male, his mind is on the doe, and the doe has her mind on getting away from the buck, and they’re oblivious to such things as whistles on a grill.”

The complaint claims that Hopkins Manufacturing “is a large company that is well-aware of media coverage regarding deer whistles, and especially when photos of its own Devices are featured on the news. Moreover, news programs routinely ask companies to comment before featuring their products in their news pieces.” The complaint thus claims that Hopkins “is well-aware its Devices do not work but continues selling them to unsuspecting consumers nationwide.”

The counts include Deceptive Acts or Practices under New York’s General Business Law, Breach of Express Warranty, and Fraud, among other things.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Bell Deer Whistles Not Effective for Avoiding Collisions Complaint

February 12, 2021

Deer-warning devices are meant to help drivers avoid collisions with deer by producing sounds that alert deer to danger. But the complaint for this class action alleges that Bell Deer Warning Devices, made by Hopkins Manufacturing Corporation don’t do that—and don’t do much of anything at all.

Bell Deer Whistles Not Effective for Avoiding Collisions Complaint

Case Event History

Bell Deer Whistles Not Effective for Avoiding Collisions Complaint

February 12, 2021

Deer-warning devices are meant to help drivers avoid collisions with deer by producing sounds that alert deer to danger. But the complaint for this class action alleges that Bell Deer Warning Devices, made by Hopkins Manufacturing Corporation don’t do that—and don’t do much of anything at all.

Bell Deer Whistles Not Effective for Avoiding Collisions Complaint
Tags: Animal Warning Device, Defective Product