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UTHSC Campus Police Partnering With Statewide Agencies for Inaugural “Slow Down Tennessee” Campaign

The UTHSC Campus Police Department is participating in “Slow Down Tennessee”, a statewide speeding prevention campaign led by the Tennessee Highway Safety Office.

The Campus Police Department at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) is a partner in the Tennessee Highway Safety Office’s (THSO) new speeding prevention campaign, “Slow Down Tennessee.” Through April 30, participating agencies will increase public education, awareness, and enforcement efforts to reduce speeding-related crashes, injuries, and fatalities statewide.

“Slow Down Tennessee” is the collaboration of various public safety partners with a shared mission to improve driver behavior and save lives,” said Director Buddy Lewis of the THSO. “We have all noticed the spike in reckless driving occurring since the pandemic. All we ask of the motoring public is to be considerate of other roadway users and obey the traffic laws, so we can all make it home safely.”

The THSO launched the campaign in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Tennessee Department of Transportation, AAA – The Auto Club Group, the Students Against Destructive Decisions, and several local law enforcement agencies.

The “Slow Down Tennessee” campaign includes a multipronged approach. Law enforcement agencies statewide will increase saturation patrols, conduct high-visibility enforcement, and utilize other tactics to curb speeding drivers. “Excessive speed is oftentimes the top contributor to fatal traffic crashes in our community,” said UTHSC Campus Police Deputy Chief Arley Knight. “UTHSC officers are encouraged to regularly enforce the speed limit in and around our campus, in order  to provide the safest atmosphere possible for our faculty, staff, and students.”

According to Tennessee’s Integrated Traffic Analysis Network, there were nearly 23,000 speeding-related crashes in Tennessee from 2017 to 2019. Thirty-six percent of those crashes involved drivers between the ages of 18 and 24 years old.

“The Tennessee Highway Patrol supports the THSO’s ‘’Slow Down Tennessee” campaign,” said Colonel Matt Perry. “All across Tennessee, we have seen an escalation in speeding that has led directly to an increase in traffic fatalities. We are asking our law enforcement and education partners, including all drivers, to join us in slowing down Tennessee.”

Outdoor signage will display “Slow Down Tennessee” as visual reminders for speeding drivers. For more information, please visit www.tntrafficsafety.org/slow.