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Department of Safety & Homeland Security Release Memorial Weekend Statistics

Thursday, May 31, 2012 | 09:12am

NASHVILLE --- Preliminary figures from the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security show 13 people were killed in traffic crashes on Tennessee roadways during this year’s 96-hour Memorial Day holiday period.  This is a drop from the 19 fatalities that occurred during the 2011 Memorial Day holiday weekend and the same number of deaths as 2010.

The 2012 Memorial Day holiday period ran from midnight, Friday, May 25 through 11:59 p.m., Monday, May 28. During that time, there were 10 fatal crashes that resulted in 13 fatalities.  Six crashes were single vehicle wrecks, while four of them were multiple car crashes. Ten of the people killed were vehicle occupants and three were motorcyclists. Five of the ten (50 percent) vehicle occupants killed were not wearing safety restraints. 

In 1973, 26 people were killed in traffic crashes in Tennessee during the 78-hour Memorial Day holiday period, the highest number of deaths on record.  The lowest number of deaths occurred when five people were killed in traffic crashes during the 2002 Memorial Day 78-hour period. 

During this year’s Memorial Day enforcement period, the THP made 94 impaired driving arrests statewide. They also issued 1,139 seat belt and child restraint device citations, 1,500 speeding and 511 registration violations.

As of May 31, 2012, there have been 397 people killed on Tennessee roadways, 26 more fatalities compared to this same time last year. The last two months have shown a decrease in vehicular deaths compared to the same months in 2011, with 21 and 10 fewer fatalities in April and May, respectively.

“One traffic fatality is one too many,” THP Colonel Tracy Trott said. “However, the reduction in traffic-related deaths the last two months is an encouraging sign that our highway safety enforcement, along with our partnerships with local law enforcement agencies and highway safety advocates, is making a difference.”

The Tennessee Highway Patrol conducted driver license and sobriety checkpoints throughout the state during this past holiday weekend, and will continue its participation in the high visibility national Click It or Ticket campaign through June 3.

State Troopers will also team up with local law enforcement to conduct traffic safety enforcement campaigns on interstates and highways. The THP Nashville District has organized a multi-jurisdictional DUI Enforcement blitz on Friday, June 1, beginning at 9 p.m. on that night and ending at 2 a.m., Saturday, June 2. 

The THP along with the Metro Nashville Police Department and the Davidson County Sheriff’s Department will hold a checkpoint on Murfreesboro Road near McGavock Pike. This will be the third checkpoint held in conjunction with the Governor’s Highway Safety Office (GHSO) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

A preliminary 2012 Memorial Day holiday statistical report, which includes the locations of the fatal crashes, accompanies this release. Please note the official traffic fatality count may rise due to delays in reporting and classification of traffic fatalities.                                                                                                   

The Tennessee Department of Safety’s (www.TN.Gov/safety) mission is to ensure the safety and general welfare of the public.  The department encompasses the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Office of Homeland Security and Driver License Services. General areas of responsibility include law enforcement, safety education, motorist services and terrorism prevention. 



Safety & Homeland Security | Press Releases