Today, Commissioner Jeff Long of the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security (TDSOHS) and Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) Colonel Matt Perry joined multiple law enforcement partners to announce the “Tennessee Safe Travel Challenge” traffic safety initiative.
The Tennessee Safe Travel Challenge is planned for Wednesday, November 24, and Sunday, November 28. The challenge consists of increased patrols from the THP and our law enforcement partners across the state. Law enforcement will focus their attention along the I-40 corridor. I-40 spans the length of Tennessee, encompassing 455 miles, and runs 2,555 miles through eight states, including North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. The THP will continue statewide enforcement on all Tennessee roadways during the holiday season.
“Our mission is to prevent traffic deaths, one loss of life is never acceptable,” said Colonel Matt Perry. “Motorists can expect to see an increased presence of troopers during some of the busiest travel days of the Thanksgiving holiday. It is important that we all follow the rules of the road. We can prevent traffic-related injuries and deaths by driving the speed limit, buckling our seat belts, never driving distracted, and never driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.”
In 2020, there were 26 crashes on the Wednesday before, and 30 crashes on the Sunday after the Thanksgiving holiday on I-40. One of the crashes was alcohol-related. THP issued 2,209 speeding and 498 seat belt citations and arrested 111 individuals for impaired driving.
Over the 108-hour holiday period, there were six fatal crashes, three of the fatalities were alcohol-related, and three people killed were not wearing seat belts. Please see the attached THP 2020 Thanksgiving Final Holiday Report.
“Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on everything we have been blessed with,” said Commissioner Jeff Long. “The Tennessee Highway Patrol will do everything in their power to ensure there’s not an empty seat at your family’s dinner table. We want our citizens and visitors to get to and from their destinations safely.”
During your travels across Tennessee, please dial *847 (*THP) if you require highway assistance. This will connect you to a THP dispatcher.
The THP’s checkpoint schedule during the 2021 Thanksgiving holiday may be viewed by visiting our website. The 2020 statistical report is also attached. https://www.tn.gov/content/dam/tn/safety/documents/thp-checkpoints/NOVEMBER2021_CHECKPOINTS.pdf