Nashville’s traffic issues aren’t going anywhere, and they’re beginning to spill out from the interstates onto other roads.
One of those roads is Highway 70, and it’s considered one of the busiest and most dangerous in the state, according to the Tennessee Highway Safety Office.
It’s what’s behind the THSO’s “Safe on Seventy” campaign, one that lines the highway with banners to warn drivers who aren’t obeying the rules of the road.
“We are not only trying to tell you but trying to show you we mean business when it comes to saving lives,” said Tony Burnett, Law Enforcement Liaison with THSO.
The campaign is a two-day collaboration with the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Tennessee Department of Transportation, and local law enforcement agencies focusing on stepped up enforcement of distracted driving, speeding, aggressive drivers and seatbelt safety on the highway.
“Hopefully by doing what we’re doing, we’re bringing more education and enforcement to the minds of people,” said Burnett. “We’ll see less fatalities and injury accidents that we normally see a lot of them.”
Before Interstate 40, Highway 70 was used as the main traffic route across Tennessee.
It’s now used as a main alternate route for those who want to avoid traffic on the interstates.
“We have people moving into Nashville every day,” said Burnett. “We see people get in a bigger hurry when they get to where they want to go.”
In 2017, there were 35 reported traffic fatalities on Highway 70, compared to 13 so far this year.
The most recent, on July 27 in Warren County when a patient in an ambulance died in a crash.
Burnett said he hopes the campaign will help to put the brake on those numbers.
“I’m very anxious to see less people killed on Highway 70 and injury accidents – that’s our number one goal,” said Burnett.
The campaign began on Monday.
Day two of enforcement will start at 11 a.m. on Friday, and end at 8 p.m., a time the THSO considers the most deadly for crashes on Highway 70.