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Anderson Co. sees increase in traffic fatalities | News

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Anderson Co. sees increase in traffic fatalities
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(WBIR-Oak Ridge) The past year's statistics are showing an alarming increase for traffic accidents in Anderson County.

From 2010 through 2013, 55 people died in traffic crashes in the county. This year alone, the county has seen 16 people lose their lives.

The Governor's Highway safety office director, Kendell Poole, and Law Enforcement Liaison Steve Dillard joined members of agencies in Anderson County to talk about the data.

Anderson County's location plays a role in the higher numbers. Poole says that you are likely to see more crashes in a place where an interstate runs through. However, when the safety office has tried to pinpoint the exact cause of the crashes, the biggest thing they notice is drivers not buckling up.

Officers say 12 percent of the population don't wear seatbelts, and half of the fatalities in their county come from those who don't buckle up.

The increase in fatalities has law enforcement focusing more closely on making drivers aware of their decisions on the roads.

Law enforcement is dealing with what they call a distracted driver epidemic. They advise drivers and passengers to put the phone down and put the seatbelt on.

As the holidays approach, Anderson County along with other agencies in Tennessee will be cracking down on distracted drivers. Drivers will see an increased presence on the roadways and could also be pulled over for routine traffic stops or sobriety checkpoints.

In the end, law enforcement says driving safely is a choice that drivers must make themselves.


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