Pedestrian Deaths Increase in Tennessee Cities
TENNESSEE – According to an online news report at tennessean.com, Tennessee cities have seen an increase in pedestrian deaths in recent years.*
Memphis, Tennessee ranks among the top 25 large cities for its rate of fatalities between 2012 and 2016, according to a USA Today Network analysis of federal safety data. Nashville, which was number 70 on the list, also saw an increase in pedestrian deaths however, in 2018, the numbers decreased. Knoxville came in number 47 on the list.
There are several reasons why pedestrian accidents are so high in Memphis and Nashville, which include missing sidewalks, crumbling concrete, and long blocks that lack crosswalks.
Roughly 80% of Nashville’s pedestrian fatalities that occurred over the past few years occurred along state roadways, including the city’s major highways, according to the executive director of Walk Bike Nashville, a local non-profit organization. Old Hickory Boulevard is a major thoroughfare in Nashville, Tennessee that has multiple lanes going in both directions and long blocks. In fact, 2017, three people were tragically killed on this roadway, representing a particularly bad year in Nashville.
There were 23 pedestrian deaths last year in Nashville, per the Metro Nashville Police Department. The previous seven years saw about thirteen to sixteen deaths per year.
Government agencies and advocates, both at the local and state level, are spearheading construction projects geared towards improving safety. Specifically, in Nashville, the city has allocated $30 million for the construction of sidewalks on major roadways.
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