NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — With more and more fatal crashes being reported throughout Middle Tennessee, THP says there are a number of reasons behind the increase.

Specifically, they say speed and distractions are big reasons why crashes become deadly.

“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. Bill Miller said.

THP saw an increase in high-speed crashes along the major highways last year. And Miller says the faster, the more likely things become fatal.

“During the peak of COVID increases in speeding crashes just skyrocketing. Now what we have are those drivers that thought that they could speed because there were less vehicles on the roadway are now finding out that the roadways are becoming more congested,” Miller said.

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month so THP is reminding people to remain focused behind the wheel.

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

And part of that includes taking every safety measure possible.

“Always wear your seatbelts. We’re seeing an increase in unrestrained fatalities and we were going in the opposite direction before COVID,” Miller said.

Miller said every fatality means a family was affected, so it’s important to drive at the speed limit and be aware of your surroundings.