State Highway Safety Report (2018) - Tennessee
The information displayed is provided by the State in their Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) Report and has not been edited by FHWA. Any questions about individual State reports should be directed to the respective State DOT.
Please note: FHWA posted baseline data States submitted in their HSIP reports to help bring context to their safety performance targets. This data may result in some discrepancies among published DOT safety data due to data sources and reporting years used when establishing the safety performance targets.
For more information on the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) see https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/hsip/spm/state_safety_targets/
Additional Comments (Targets)
Fatalities There was no change in percent of fatalities between CY 2016 and 2017 based on preliminary 2017 numbers. Fatality numbers from 2016 to 2017 appear to have remained stable after a significant increase in fatalities from 2015 to 2016 (8%). Early 2018 fatality numbers were trending lower than 2017 numbers in a year to date comparison as of April 2, 2018. Three years ( 2013, 2014, and 2015) with some of the state’s lowest fatality numbers (under 1,000 fatalities) are included in Tennessee’s 2013-2017 five-year rolling average baseline; this impacts ability to set a target lower than the baseline. Non-motorist fatalities comprised 11% of total traffic fatalities in Tennessee for CY 2016. Preliminary data, indicates that 134 (13%) of the 1,042 traffic fatalities that occurred in TN in 2017 were non-motorist fatalities. Non-motorist fatalities have been on the increase nationwide. Distracted walking is now a concern for cities and states as sharp rise in smartphones to send and receive messages is a mental and visual distraction for both walkers and drivers. (Non-motorist fatalities in TN were over a 100 for both 2015 and 2016 showing a substantial increase from the previous four years (2011-2014). Vehicle Miles Travelled VMT trend continues upward. Preliminary 2017 VMT numbers indicate that VMT in Tennessee increased from 4-6%. VMT and average monthly temperature had strong positive relationships with number of fatalities meaning more fatalities occur when more driving was done, and also when weather was warmer. New passenger vehicle registrations also showed a positive correlation with the number of fatalities but not as strong as VMT and temperature. Reference 5-year Correlation between Fatalities and Economic and Other Indicators (2011-2015) chart that was part of a 2015 NHTSA report. https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812318 Draft targets set for 2015-2019 anticipate a 1.0% increase in VMT. This was based on average VMT increase over recent years along with estimation of population growth of 0.8% a year for next decade as reported in the 2018 State Economic Outlook Report. Population and Travel Growth “For the fourth year in a row, Tennessee saw population growth increasing slightly faster than the national average. Tennessee’s population in 2017 was 6.7 million, which was one percent more than in 2016. The Nashville metropolitan area continued to see its population grow faster than the rest of the state in 2017. Of the state’s 95 counties, a total of 77 experienced growth in their populations. Of the 77 counties, 34 had growth rates that exceeded the state average of 1.1% and 45 grew faster than the national average of 0.7%”. – U. T. Boyd Center for Business and Research According to the 2018 Economic Report to the Governor, Tennessee’s population is projected to grow at rate of 0.8% per year for the next 10 years keeping pace with national forecast for population growth. Tennessee experienced 113.6 million person stays in 2017, an increase of 3.3 percent over 2016. Tennessee places among the Top 10 travel destinations in the U.S. for the fourth consecutive year and is considered to be a top retirement destination. In 2017, Tennessee had 4,799,881 licensed drivers. This is an increase of approximately 2%from 2016 Twenty percent of licensed drivers in Tennessee as of 2016 are senior drivers (65 years or older.) Tennessee's senior population as of 2017 is estimated to be 16% of total state population fy the U.S. Census Bureau. Distracted Driving