Motorists across Tennessee would be wise to exercise extreme caution anytime they take to the state’s roads because data from the first six months of 2021 shows that fatal car crashes are on the rise. Fewer drivers took to the state’s roads in 2020 than they did in 2021, offering a possible explanation as to why this year’s road death numbers are higher than last year’s. However, fatality numbers from the first six months of 2021 are also higher than those seen in the same span in 2019.
According to WSMV, fatal crashes in Tennessee are up 20% statewide this year.
Fatal crash statistics
Between January and June of 2021, there were 584 fatal car wrecks reported on Tennessee roads. Of those fatalities, 66 involved individuals who were walking or riding a bicycle. This is about 100 more road deaths than seen in the same span in either 2020 or 2019. Research also shows that fatal crashes have increased in urban areas as well as rural ones. Between January and June of this year, there were 240 road deaths in rural areas and 344 road fatalities in more urban areas.
Fatal crash contributing factors
Many fatal crashes across Tennessee and the nation share similar elements in common. Driver distraction is a frequent contributing factor to fatal wrecks. So, too, are alcohol use, driver inattention, speed and a lack of seat belt use. Driver inexperience is also a common factor, with many fatal car accidents across the state and nation involving teenage drivers who have limited driving experience.
Whether these trends are going to continue throughout the rest of 2021 is not yet clear.