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Tennessee Car Accident Stats

Posted by Harlene Labrum | Feb 07, 2022

From its rich cultural heritage to its iconic landscapes, Tennessee stands as one of the most emblematic states in the country. However, when it comes to car accidents, Tennessee is not immune from this modern scourge. The number of car accidents Tennessee sees every year ranks high nationwide. If you are one of the thousands of Tennesseans who has been in a car crash, consider the accident attorneys at Labrum Law. Contact our experienced personal injury attorneys at (615) 338-9500 for an auto accident consultation today, and to learn more about your legal rights.

Car Accident Statistics

According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Website, car accidents are the number one cause of death in the United States for people ranging from 1 through age 54. A car is a necessity for millions worldwide. However, considering how many types of vehicles use the roadways and the millions of pedestrians and cyclists that share these roadways, it is no surprise that millions of accidents occur each year worldwide. Just look at some of the following statistics from the CDC regarding car accidents globally:


  • More than 1.3 million people are killed on roadways every year
  • Over 3,500 people die every day as a result of car accidents
  • More people die in car crashes now than from HIV/AIDS
  • Half of the fatalities worldwide consist of pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists
  • Crashes are estimated to be the eighth leading cause of death for people of all ages

The economic damage is just as extensive. For example, the CDC estimates that car crashes will cost the world economy $1.8 trillion in the years between 2015 and 2030 alone.

Car Accidents Skyrocket During Pandemic

Car accidents skyrocketed during the pandemic. Even though the nation's roads saw fewer drivers, more fatal and injurious accidents.


According to the National Safety Council website, an estimated 42,000 people died due to car accidents in 2020, an increase from the year before, despite the emptier roads. Shockingly, the death rate increase amounts to a 9 percent bump from 2019, the largest single year increase in 96 years. In addition, the NSC estimates that car accidents resulted in an additional 4.8 million serious injuries, all of it translating to hundreds of billions of dollars to the nation's economy. 


Despite the statistics, a few states saw a drop in fatalities, including:


  • Maine
  • Alaska
  • Nebraska
  • New Mexico
  • North Dakota
  • Wyoming

Some states experienced a significant increase of more than 15% in auto-related fatalities in 2020, including:


  • Mississippi
  • Rhode Island
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • Georgia
  • Connecticut
  • Arkansas

It seems that, on all fronts, 2020 was a challenging year for public health. But how does the great state of Tennessee rank in car accident-related loss?

Tennessee Car Accident Statistics

According to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Website, the fatality rate in Tennessee due to auto accidents rose by 5.5% between 2019 and 2020. The rate increased again by 11% between 2020 and 2021. 

Here are more sobering statistics about Tennessee car accidents in the recent past:

  • The year-to-date fatality rate for auto accidents is over 900
  • The year-to-date total for crashes surpasses 4,000
  • In 2021, of these numbers, 115 crashes and 124 fatalities involved large commercial vehicles

For the years 2016-2020, the Tennessee counties that experienced the highest overall average of car accidents are:

  • Shelby County (37,000+ accidents)
  • Davidson County (31,000+ accidents)
  • Knox County (approx. 13,800 accidents)
  • Hamilton County (approx. 13,400 accidents)

As you can see, the number of car accidents Tennessee experiences is on trend with the rest of the nation, post-pandemic. If you were in a car accident in the great state of Tennessee, consult with an accident attorney to understand your rights. Contact the experienced Tennessee car accident attorneys at Labrum Law at (615) 338-9500 and schedule your consultation today.

What to Do After a Car Accident

Car accidents are, by and large, a type of personal injury case. Except for the rare, horrific incidents of criminal intent, most car crashes are accidents and fall under the kind of law known as civil law. Other types of personal injury cases include:


  • Dog Bites
  • Slip-and-Fall Accidents
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Injuries From Defective Products

There are a few essential steps to take immediately following any personal injury incident, especially car accidents:

Seek Medical Help

The very first, most critical step after any accident is to seek medical help. Victims of severe car accidents may need to go to a hospital, so medical help is a given. However, for less severe accidents, or “fender benders,” going to the doctor is still a vital step. 


Most accidents that don't seem severe can still leave lasting physical damage that may not show up until days or weeks later. Additionally, after an accident, most people will experience a surge of brain chemicals, like adrenalin, that will keep them from experiencing the sensation of pain. Such chemicals can mask bodily damage like broken bones or organ damage. Therefore, going to a medical professional immediately after an accident is critical for one's health as well as for estimating damages in the event of a future claim.

Keep Detailed Records

Start keeping records right away. All too often, people involved in accidents may not be thinking ahead to what they may need for a legal case, causing them to spend countless hours backtracking to add up the costly damages an accident has caused.


Common records to keep in mind in the event of a car accident include:


  • Medical Records
  • Police Reports
  • Auto Damage Estimates
  • Missed Work/Lost Income
  • Relevant Photos

Gathering as much information as possible will help when it comes time to file a claim or defend against a claim, depending on who was at fault. 

 Car Accidents Tennessee Attorneys

Finally, seeking the advice of an experienced attorney will help you understand how the law can help you after an accident. The car accidents Tennessee experiences year-to-year means you're not alone in your situation, and the qualified attorneys at Labrum Law have decades of experience working with car accidents in Tennessee. Contact the compassionate legal team at Labrum Law today at (615) 338-9500 to schedule a consultation.

About the Author

Harlene Labrum

Harlene is focused and passionate about helping those injured in car wrecks.  She earned her J.D. at Nashville School of Law and her Bachelor's degree at State University of New York at Albany, awarded with the highest GPA and high honors.  Harlene began her career in law as a personal injury par...

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