Tennessee Highway Patrol Reminds Motorists To Act Responsibly During St. Patrick Holiday

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Tennessee Highway Patrol reminded motorists to buckle up and drive sober during upcoming St. Patrick’s Day holiday.  State troopers will utilize traffic safety enforcement tools, such as saturation patrols and sobriety and seat belt checkpoints, in an effort to reduce serious injury crashes and fatal wrecks during this popular 48-hour holiday period. 

The 2014 St. Patrick’s Day holiday period will begin at midnight, Sunday, and end at 11:59 p.m., Monday. However, THP personnel have enforcement activities planned throughout the weekend, starting on Friday.

Last year, 13 people died in vehicular crashes during the 72-hour St. Patty’s Day holiday period. Of the 13 fatalities, six were vehicle occupants and four (66.7 percent) were not wearing safety restraints. Five of the vehicular deaths were motorcycle riders and two were all-terrain vehicle occupants. Four of the fatalities (30.8 percent) occurred in an alcohol-related crash.

“We have a responsibility to help ensure the public’s safety, and we hope our visibility and enforcement techniques will encourage motorists to obey traffic laws, specifically, wearing your seat belt. We can prevent many senseless deaths if people would just buckle up,” THP Colonel Tracy Trott said. “State troopers will also aggressively seek out drunk or distracted drivers this holiday weekend,” he added. 

During last year’s St. Patrick’s Day 72-hour enforcement period, the THP made 72 impaired driving arrests statewide. Since Jan. 1, state troopers have arrested 1,535 DUI violators, a 38.2 percent increase from the 1,111 arrests made at this same time a year ago. 

In 2014, preliminary statistics indicate that 158 people have died on Tennessee roadways, compared to 164 fatalities during the same time period in 2013. 

Scheduled checkpoints for the St. Patrick’s Day Holiday are attached, as well as statistical data for St. Patrick’s Day 2013.

ST. PATRICK’S DAY DRIVING TIPS:

Plan Ahead. If you plan to drink, arrange a safe way home before the festivities begin. 

Before drinking, designate a sober driver and give that person your keys.

If you’re impaired, call a taxi, use public transportation, or call a sober friend or family member to get you home safely. 

Use the local Sober Ride program.

If you see a drunk driver on the road, promptly contact your local law enforcement agency or dial *THP. 

Remember, Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk. If you or someone who is about to ride with someone who is impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to their destination safely.

And remember, the tragedies and costs of driving drunk are serious and real. Not only do you risk killing yourself or someone else, but the trauma and financial costs of a crash or an arrest for drunk driving are significant.

For more information on the consequences of impaired driving in Tennessee, visit http://tn.gov/safety/duioutline.htm.



Chestnut Street To Be Closed For Building Maintenance

Chestnut St. will be closed between W. 11th St. and W. 12th St. for building maintenance. Detours will be posted and all property access will be maintained.  In order to view a map of these  closures , visit  http://www.chattanooga. gov/transportation/ traffic -eng ineering-a-operations/ special ... (click for more)

Part Of Central Avenue To Be Closed Next Week

Central Avenue will be closed between E. 42nd Street and Workman Road starting  Monday, at 8:30 a.m.  and will reopen on  Thursday, at 4 p.m.   Detours will be posted.  In order to view a map of these  closures , visit  http://www.chattanooga. gov/transportation/ traffic -eng ineering-a-operations/ ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain To Hold Public Meetings On Idea Of Setting Up Own School System

Discussion about follow-up public meetings regarding the Signal Mountain School System Viability Committee (SMSSVC) report dominated the council’s work session on Friday afternoon. Council member Dan Landrum’s opinion about how to proceed differed from the other four council members. Mr. Landrum argued to end the study and to hold no public meetings. His reason was that of the 738 ... (click for more)

Travis Caslin, 42, Shot While Walking Along South Willow Street

Chattanooga Police said a man was shot on Friday night while walking along South Willow Street.   The victim was identified as Travis Caslin, 42.   At 7:37 p.m., Chattanooga Police officers were called to a local hospital after a person showed up with a gunshot wound.   Police were informed that the victim's condition was non-life threatening. ... (click for more)

October Is Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Myth And Fact Check

My husband and I recently had the privilege of participating in the American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk in Chattanooga. I listened as my husband told the audience about how his mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when he was nine and how she died from the disease when he was fourteen. As a child, my husband didn’t understand what breast cancer ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

Bill Pennington, a sports writer for the New York Times, was lamenting the “huddle” is slowly disappearing in football due to the faster pace of the game and, during his search for more information, he called former Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann. Bill wrote that Joe couldn’t stop laughing about the funny things that would happen between plays. Joe told this story: ... (click for more)