onemeeeliondollars has an interesting YouTube Video about drivers running over animals. In his study, he chose a stretch of highway with a large shoulder area and placed either a rubber snake, a rubber turtle, a rubber tarantula (the entomological connection) or a rubber leaf in the shoulder area and observed the behavior of motorists.
He observed 1000 vehicles and found that 6 percent of drivers will swerve out of the lane to hit the rubber animal. No driver swerved out of the lane to hit the rubber leaf. The animal targeted most often was the tarantula. 3.2 percent of the drivers intentionally hit the tarantula. compared to 1.8 percent for the snake and 1 percent for the turtle. Eighty-nine percent of the “Killer” drivers were in SUVs or Trucks. Eleven percent were in cars. Do jerks prefer to drive SUVs and Trucks? Or is the population of car drivers just as bad but more worried about vehicle damage?
Interestingly, about 4 percent of the drivers were good Samaritans who stopped to help the animal off the road. The rubber turtle was “Saved” the more often than the rubber snake. No one tried to save the tarantula. This is not surprising as most people are afraid of large hairy spiders.