2020 Tennessee Traffic Accident Statistics Released by TDOT

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According to the latest statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), accidents are the 4th leading cause of death among Tennessee residents. It’s ranked 8th in the U.S. for traffic fatalities.

Car accidents can happen in an instant and drastically change (or end) your life.


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One of the main ways the state of Tennessee tries to reduce the number of car accidents and fatalities is through driver education. Each January, the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) puts out reports with accident statistics from the previous year, detailing the different types of accidents and who was involved in them.

Below, we’ve compiled the latest statistics so you can see what types of car accidents are most common in Tennessee and what are the biggest areas of concern while driving.

How many car accidents were there in 2020 (and how many were fatal)?

According to TDOT, there were 175,063 total car accidents in 2020. Of those accidents, 5,735 resulted in serious injuries or fatalities.


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October saw the highest total number of car accidents at 17,032, but July was the worst month for fatal and serious injury crashes with 594.

In comparison, the total number of car accidents in 2019 was higher (204,869), but there were fewer fatalities.

2020 traffic accident demographics and causes

Are teen drivers and seniors more likely to get into a car accident than middle-aged drivers? The answer may surprise you.

According to the 2020 data from TDOT, the age range with the most accidents was the 25 to 29-year-olds with a total of 34,982.


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However, a quick glance at the numbers can be deceiving. If you look a little deeper, you may notice that they split the data for the younger drivers into 2-year spans instead of 4 years, so if you put the 16 to 17-year-olds with the 18 to 20-year-olds, the total number of traffic accidents in 2020 was 35,737—the highest of any other age range.

What probably won’t come as a surprise is the fact that most accidents happen during peak traffic times (i.e. “rush hour” after work) and on Saturdays.

The list of auto accident causes in 2020 is long, but some are more common than others. One of the most common causes of car accidents was distracting driving. According to TDOT, 1 in 15 car accidents in the state involve a distracted driver. They accounted for about 12 percent of all car accidents on urban roads.
Another cause of many car accidents is drunk drivers. TDOT reports that 50 percent of DUI car accidents result in serious or fatal injuries, and 75 percent of drunk drivers are men.

Be a defensive Tennessee driver

Accidents can happen at any moment. Sometimes you can’t avoid them, but if you can look out for and avoid potentially bad situations, you may save your life and the lives of others. Continue to educate yourself on current Tennessee traffic statistics and become a defensive driver who is able to handle the dangers of driving with confidence.

If you are a victim of a car accident, hire an experienced Tennessee car accident lawyer to help you navigate your case.

Sidney Gilreath

Being a pilot made me a better lawyer. Flying requires discipline, organization, and the ability to plan ahead. I obtained my pilots instruction from Evelyn Johnson of Morristown, TN and later was approved for my flying certificate from her since she is an FAA flight examiner. I hold a private pilots license, land with an instrument, and multi-engine rating, I have logged more than 4k hours as pilot in command of an aircraft. Being a pilot has allowed me to fly across the nation helping clients.

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