THP: Rutherford County sees increase in fatal car crashes


RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — Interstate 24 can be a dangerous place. On Thursday afternoon it became the scene of a two-car crash that killed two people and injured a third.

Tennessee Highway Patrol says it happened on I-24 westbound at mile marker 95 near Murfreesboro Highway. According to THP, 19-year-old Sebastien Tarin from Manchester and 65-year-old Stanley Peterson from Beechgrove died.

Tarin was driving a 2012 Ford Escape when it left the roadway and crossed the median into the westbound lanes, according to the THP.

A 22-year-old man who was a passenger in the Escape was also injured.

Lt. Bill Miller with THP says things like speed, and distractions like cell phones, are contributing to increased crash numbers across Tennessee.

“Many people approach their daily commutes and they just simply don’t think they can become a victim of a crash. But a crash does not discriminate against anyone,” Lt. Miller said.

In Middle Tennessee’s eight-county region, THP says fatal crashes increased from 277 to 289 from 2019 to 2020. The county with the highest increase in fatal crashes was Rutherford. Fatal crashes increased there by 19 between 2019 and 2020.

“Crashes are becoming much more violent. The carnage and the damage to the vehicle and the occupants inside the vehicle is becoming more severe,” Lt. Miller said.

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