Accident on Interstate 40 in Putnam County Delays Traffic Thursday Morning
An accident involving a tractor-trailer blocked traffic in the eastbound lanes of Interstate 40 near Cookeville on Thursday morning.
According to a report by the Herald-Citizen, the accident occurred around 3 a.m. Thursday near mile marker 313 between the cities of Monterey and Cookeville in Putnam County.
A spokesperson with the Tennessee Highway Patrol told reports that one lane of I-40 East was expected to be closed for most of the day as responders worked to clear the accident scene and begin a preliminary investigation to determine what caused the accident to occur.
The impact of the collision caused the tractor-trailer to overturn, which contributed to the heavy delays that commuters experienced Thursday morning and well into the afternoon.
Emergency responders said there were no fatalities resulting from the accident, but injuries were reported. The cause of the accident has yet to be released by police, and it’s unknown how many people were injured or the severity of their injuries.
How Can You Avoid an Accident While Driving on the Interstate?
Thousands of people who live in Middle Tennessee use Interstate 24, Interstate 440, Interstate 65, and Interstate 40 on a daily basis to commute to and from their jobs. Interstate driving often means much higher speeds than what you experience on other roadways, as well as much denser traffic volume—particularly during the morning and evening rush hours. Because there are so many more vehicles near you and the overall rate of speed is much higher than other roads, accidents can become a higher risk, and when they occur, serious injuries can result.
To help reduce your chances of being involved in an accident on the interstate, do your best to follow these tips:
- Don’t follow other vehicles too closely.
Following too closely is one of the most common causes of auto accidents on interstates. Because all vehicles are traveling at such high speeds, braking distance increases dramatically. That means that a single driver applying his or her brakes can cause a chain reaction that may ultimately end up with one vehicle rear-ending another. Always leave several car vehicles between the front of your vehicle and the rear of the vehicle in front of you to give yourself and your brakes time to act in case you need to slow down or stop suddenly.
- Use a turn signal and extreme caution when changing lanes.
Another common cause of accidents on interstates is when drivers change lanes without signaling or making sure the lane is clear. Changing lanes safely at high speeds requires the use of all mirrors, as well as a head turn to make sure the lane is empty if you can’t see in your vehicle’s blind spot. In addition to checking the lane, you should also use your turn signal to avoid changing lanes at the same time as other drivers. It’s also important to never change lanes directly in front of a semi-truck or tractor-trailer in heavy traffic, as the driver may be unable to slow down without striking your vehicle.
- Avoid exceeding the speed limit.
If the posted speed limit on the interstate is 70 miles per hour, it’s important to drive at or slightly below that speed at all times. Exceeding the speed limit by even five miles per hour is enough to not only put you at risk of receiving a speeding ticket, but it can also increase your risk of an accident if you are exceeding the speed of other vehicles near you. Drivers who exceed the speed limit by 10 or even 20 miles per hour are at a significantly higher risk of accidents, as many vehicles aren’t intended to be driven at such high speeds.
At Matt Hardin Law, our Cookeville auto accident attorneys know that car accidents can happen anywhere and at any time, but interstate accidents often result in the most serious injuries and the most damage to vehicles. That’s why it’s so important to be alert and cautious when driving on high-speed interstates in Tennessee.
If you or someone you love was hurt in an auto accident caused by a negligent driver, you may be eligible to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and vehicle repair costs. To find out how our law firm may be able to help you, dial (615) 200-1111 or complete a free online consultation form.