Knoxville, TN Car Accident Lawyer
Interstate 75 enters the state of Tennessee in the Chattanooga metropolitan area, then eventually overlaps I-40, near Farragut, headed eastbound where they both enter Knoxville outskirts. At this point, I-75 overlaps I-640 for a short period of time. Interstate 75 has some of the highest points of elevation through the Cumberland Mountains and the Cumberland Plateau. Interstate 75, stretching 161.86 miles through the state of Tennessee, was rated #78 among the most dangerous Interstates between the years of 2004 and 2008. During this time period, there were 102 fatalities on I-75, or .54 per mile.
Interstate 40 stretches across the United States, and across the entire state of Tennessee, from west to east, connecting Memphis, Nashville and Knoxville. Tennessee has the longest stretch of I-40, at 455 miles. The skyline of Knoxville comes into view at mile 387, before the Interstate goes through downtown Knoxville. At mile 440, I-40 turns south as it winds through the gap between Stone Mountain and English Mountain, affording drivers a dramatic view of the Great Smokies. Massive mesh nets are visible throughout this area, used as rockslide prevention measures.
Until June of 2009, one section of I-40 which runs through downtown Knoxville, was closed to traffic for a year and a half, while road construction took place. The four-lane section which was both congested and accident-prone, was widened to six lanes to improve the flow of traffic. The rugged terrain of East Tennessee provided a number of challenges for the construction crews and engineers of I-40 and rockslides were an ever-present problem.
Knox County Auto Accident Statistics for 2012-2016
The County of Knox had the following auto accident statistics for 2012-2016:
- 12th in the overall number of crashes as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 80th in the number of fatal crashes, as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 23rd in the number of auto accident injuries, as compared to all the other Tennessee counties;
- 38th in the number of motorcycle accidents, as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 76th in the number of fatalities due to alcohol impairment, as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 47th in the number of crashes which were caused by alcohol impairment, as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 35th in the number of crashes which were the result of excessive speed, as compared to all other Tennessee counties;
- 8th in the number of auto crashes caused by a young driver between the ages of 15 and 24, as compared to all other Tennessee counties, and
- 9th in the number of senior drivers (over the age of 65) who were involved in an auto accident, as compared to all other Tennessee counties.
Interstate Accidents on I-75 and I-40
Interstate accidents are fairly frequent, due to the high volume of fast-traveling traffic. Interstates 75 and 40 which are near to Knoxville sees a particularly high volume of traffic, and reckless driving can be a problem when the traffic slows down during rush hour and people get frustrated, impatient and angry. Reckless driving behaviors include the following:
- Driving at an excess speed, in a dangerous manner;
- Blowing through a stop sign or stop light with no regard for the safety of others;
- Failing to yield the right-of-way;
- Passing on a curve or a hill, where oncoming traffic is not visible;
- Weaving in and out of traffic;
- Tailgating other vehicles;
- Failing to signal your intention, or to keep a watch on the roadway and other traffic while you text, talk on the phone, or fiddle with electronic devices, GPS devices, or even the radio.
Reckless driving is generally punished as a misdemeanor, although the level of recklessness could bump the offense up to a felony in some states. The collateral damage of a reckless driving conviction can include skyrocketing insurance rates, and a driver’s license suspension. Reckless driving is considered any type of driving that shows a reckless, wanton or willful disregard for the safety of other drivers. Reckless driving can also be defined as any time the driver fails to maintain control of the vehicle, however not from mere negligence, but with a willful disregard for the potential consequences.
Courts have held that the crime of DUI and the crime of reckless driving are two very distinct offenses. Although a person who is driving while impaired might be driving recklessly, he or she would be charged with DUI and with reckless driving, however reckless driving does not necessarily go hand in hand with driving under the influence.
Road Rage Accidents
Road rage is an ever-increasing problem, as people’s commutes grow longer and their tempers grow shorter. Incidents of rude gestures, screaming, and even serious violence are getting more and more common. Road rage consists of driving in a manner which endangers other persons or property, or an assault with a motor vehicle or other dangerous weapon. Those most susceptible to road rage from others typically do the following while driving:
- Drive while distracted, use your phone while driving or text and drive;
- Switch lanes frequently without giving a signal;
- Keep your high beams on with no care for the oncoming traffic, or
- Fail to check blind spots prior to switching lanes to determine whether you are cutting someone off.
The NHTSA show the following statistics regarding aggressive driving and road rage:
- Aggressive driving is responsible for 66 percent of all traffic fatalities;
- A firearm is involved in 37 percent of all aggressive driving incidents;
- Road rage is most often seen in males under the age of 19;
- At least half of all drivers who are on the receiving end of aggressive behavior will respond in kind;
- Two percent of drivers admit to trying to run an aggressive driving off the road, and
- Over a seven-year period, 12,610 injuries and 218 murders were attributed to road rage.
Getting the Help You Need from Martinson & Beason, P.C.
As a Knoxville resident, you have likely been on Interstates 75 and 40 at one time or another, therefore know how busy these roadways are. Having an accident on an Interstate—or anywhere else—can be a traumatic experience. You will find you are dealing with your own injuries, as well as worrying about your medical expenses, and your regular monthly expenses if you are not able to return to work. Having an experienced personal injury attorney from the law firm of Martinson & Beason, P.C. by your side can go a long way towards a more positive outcome, particularly if your injuries were severe and you are facing long-term medical care or extensive wage loss. The attorneys at Martinson & Beason believe each of their clients deserves the very best representation available. If you are facing an uncertain future after your automobile accident, call Martinson & Beason today.