HomeTop StoriesTHP reports more than 30 traffic-related deaths so far in 2024; ...

THP reports more than 30 traffic-related deaths so far in 2024; Metro hopes investments in public transportation will help reduce incidents

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Another life was taken in Nashville on Thursday. This time it was a wrong-way crash on I-65.

Just five months into the year, Nashville already had more than 30 traffic fatalities.

“2022 was the deadliest year ever for pedestrians and that’s why we want to make safety possible for people who are just walking. We want to reduce the number of accidents,” Nashville Mayor Freddie O’Connell acknowledged during the Metro State Address.

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Now, two years later, you may be wondering what is being done to address this problem.

“We go around the city and on our networks with a lot of injuries we look at ways to improve them so that there is a safer experience. We are primarily focusing on the areas where the most accidents that result in serious injuries and deaths occur,” Diana Alarcon, director of the Nashville Department of Transportation (NDOT) explained in an interview with News 2 in late 2023.

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NDOT has been working with city leaders to focus on making streets safer. In Davidson County, the Tennessee Highway Patrol has recorded more than 30 fatal crashes in the first five months of 2024. Although these accidents occur across the country, most occur in South Nashville.

“I think it is very important for us to really dig into the cause even when a crash occurs. We want to find out the cause,” Alacron had said.

February was the deadliest month yet this year, with 13 people dying as a result of an accident. Of those thirteen, seven resulted from just two incidents at Woodland Street and Bell Road.

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“If we make our streets and intersections safer for motorists, for pedestrians and ultimately for public transit users, we believe all of that will improve if this program is approved,” O’Connell explained. “In the four pillars of it, it’s sidewalks, signals, service and safety.”

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It’s an issue that the Vision Zero Advisory Committee has tried to address. Vision Zero is an initiative aimed at reducing the number of road deaths or serious injuries among all road users. The committee has pointed to right turns and high-speed lanes as additional risk factors.

“It’s very easy to go in and blame, but whatever you want to blame – lack of crossings, lack of lighting, lack of signage, not paying attention while driving – that’s actually all the case, because if we all slow down, if we all obey the speed limit. If we all pay attention to what is happening and we are not under the influence, we will all be much safer on the road,” Alarcon explains.

Metro councilor clarifies his criticism of ‘Vision Zero’

Nearly a month ago, O’Connell announced details of the “Choose How You Move” transportation plan. The plan includes adding:

The mayor’s plans will go before the Metro Council for a vote in the coming months. If approved, voters will have the final say in the November election.

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