Tenn. roadway fatalities surpass 1,000 in 2012

Dec 31, 2012

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee has surpassed a thousand highway fatalities for the year, which is a large increase from the drop seen in 2011.

However, safety officials say a messaging campaign helped to keep the number from climbing even higher.

For the first three months of the year, the number of deaths on Tennessee roadways was on track to approach an all-time high, WPLN-FM reports. The Department of Transportation in April put a running tally of the fatalities on 150 digital signs around the state along with public safety messages.

Kendell Poole, who directs the Governor's Highway Safety Office, says the number of fatalities has been flat since then.

The number of highway deaths in 2012 increased by about 70 compared to 2011, but are still well below the 1,300 deaths that occurred in 2004.