Tennessee Highway Patrol Steps Up Seat Belt, DUI Enforcement For Memorial Day Weekend

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Tennessee Highway Patrol will step up seat belt and DUI enforcement efforts over the Memorial Day holiday weekend. The THP also encourages all motorists to drive safely during the 78-hour period. State troopers will conduct several seat belt and sobriety checkpoints and will be out in force patrolling statewide to help ensure safe roadways this holiday. 

The 2013 Memorial Day holiday period begins at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Monday. 

16 people were killed on Tennessee roadways during the 2012 Memorial Day holiday weekend. That was a decrease from 19 fatalities in 2011. Last year, alcohol was involved in six of the fatalities. 

“This weekend traditionally marks the start of the summer travel season. That means more motorists on the roads, and a greater chance of accidents. To help decrease those chances and make the roadways safer, we are using our crash data from previous years to deploy troopers to the spots where more accidents occur,” Commissioner Bill Gibbons said.  

As of May 22, 328 people have been killed on Tennessee roadways this calendar year. That is 50 fewer vehicular fatalities than the 378 killed during this same time period last year. Of the vehicle occupant fatalities this year, nearly half (48.6 percent) were not restrained. 

“While there has been a decrease so far this year, more traffic fatalities could be prevented if motorists would simply wear their seat belts,” Colonel Tracy Trott said. “We are placing a special emphasis on increasing seat belt usage this year.  We are also strategically conducting DUI checkpoints and will continue to focus our efforts on stopping drunk driving,” Trott added.

Preliminary data show that 21 percent of all traffic fatalities in Tennessee year-to-date have been alcohol related.  State troopers have made 2,402 DUI arrests so far this calendar year – a 7.5 percent increase from the 2,235 DUI arrests made during the same time period in 2012.

The THP has scheduled 65 checkpoints throughout the long holiday weekend in an effort to reduce fatalities and serious injury crashes in the state.  

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security’s (www.TN.Gov/safety) mission is to ensure that the state is a safe, secure place in which to live, work and travel; enforce the law with integrity; and provide customer-focused services professionally and efficiently. 


Electric Car-Sharing Station Launches At Southern Adventist University

The latest electric car-sharing site in the greater Chattanooga area opens Thursday at 3 p.m. on the campus of Southern Adventist University. Two Nissan Leafs will be available on campus for the community to rent, and the charging station is also open to the public. Solar panels on the structure’s roof offset the electricity used to power the cars, which supports ... (click for more)

The Art Of Breathing Is Saturday At The Hunter Museum

The Art of Breathing will be held Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at the Hunter Museum. Participants will explore a work of art as a way to meditate and experience the art of breathing.   This 45-minute program will be held in the Hunter galleries and led by Hunter staff and yoga instructor Jonathan Ellis .  "The fact that you are breathing is the fact that you are alive," ... (click for more)

Haslam Unveils Comprehensive Tax Cut And Transportation Proposal Including Higher Gas Tax And Vehicle Registration Fee

Joined by mayors from across the state and leaders in the manufacturing and trucking industries, Governor Bill Haslam on Wednesday announced "a comprehensive and strategic plan to cut taxes on food and manufacturing while updating how the state provides Tennesseans the safe and reliable transportation network needed to support future job growth." The IMPROVE Act, “Improving ... (click for more)

Big Woody's Tree Service Employee Killed In Fall On Signal Mountain

An employee of Woody's Tree Service fell to his death 150 feet off a bluff while trimming trees on Signal Mountain on Wednesday. At  11:22 a.m. , a 911 call was made by an employee of the tree service reporting a man in his early 30s had fallen off a bluff the mountain while trimming trees on private property. Walden's Ridge Emergency Services responded to 6202 ... (click for more)

Beyond Freedom Of Speech - And Response

Yes, most people know about the First Amendment to our Constitution, "The right, guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, to express beliefs and ideas without unwarranted government restriction."  I being a "deplorable" draw the line when people block traffic, try to disrupt, and even stop an activity through malice and disregard for others. Case being ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Where Is Central’s Auditorium?

I am surely one of the biggest proponents of high school athletics there is, especially after half a decade of being an eye witness to the vast array of lessons that are learned every day by anyone associated with sports. That said, I have watched the Hamilton County Commission waffle on a $500,000 track at Central High School with a certain curiosity because the same high school ... (click for more)