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Are Tennessee's roads getting any safer?

If you are one of the many people in Tennessee who has watched the evolution of automotive technology in recent years, you might assume that the advances being made are able to help lead to a reduction in motor vehicle accidents. Certainly this is part of the goal of the improving safety features and other elements in vehicles however it seems that progress in saving lives is not yet being seen.

According to records released from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Tennessee experienced a significant increase in the number of people killed in automobile crashes from 2015 to 2016. In 2015, there were 962 vehicular fatalities statewide. In 2016, that number rose to 1,041. The same trend was seen in Knox County where motor vehicle deaths jumped from 54 in 2015 to 70 the following year.

Excessive speed and alcohol consumption continue to be two factors that are identified as contributors in many fatal accidents. In 2016 alone, 183 people statewide lost their lives in wrecks in which speeding was a factor. Another 223 people were killed by drunk drivers. In Knox County, over the five years from 2012 to 2016, 159 people died in speeding-related crashes and 77 people died in alcohol-related accidents. Many other fatalities happen in wrecks in which large commercial trucks are involved as 120 people in Tennessee died in these incidents in 2016 alone.

This information is not intended to provide legal advice but is instead meant to give Tennessee residents an idea of the ongoing risks they and their loved ones face on the roads often due to the negligence of other drivers.

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Pryor Priest & Harber
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