Woman Killed as Murfreesboro Police Pursue Driver of Alleged Stolen Vehicle
A 28-year-old woman was killed when her vehicle was struck by a Cadillac Escalade that was reportedly stolen while its driver was attempting to evade police in Murfreesboro.
According to a report by WKRN.com, the accident occurred on South Church Street near Veterans Parkway Friday afternoon at around 4 p.m. in Rutherford County.
Officials with the Tennessee Highway Patrol told reporters that police were pursuing the driver after receiving information that the vehicle he was driving had been stolen from a funeral home on McMinnville Highway.
The vehicle was used by the funeral home for funeral processions and other business-related activities.
The suspect in the Escalade initially traveled the wrong way on Interstate 24 West while trying to evade police before exiting the interstate on Church Street. While traveling southbound at a high rate of speed, he struck the victim’s Nissan Altima as it left a parking lot.
THP officials say the Escalade struck the Altima on its driver’s side, causing the victim to suffer fatal injuries. The woman’s 7-month-old daughter was also in the car with her, but she survived her injuries due to being in a car seat at the time of the crash.
A spokesperson with the THP says that the car seat played a big role in saving the infant’s life, and that her survival helps show the importance of safety seats and seat belts for all drivers and passengers.
Facts about Tennessee Seat Belt and Safety Seat Usage from the CDC
Wearing a seat belt is one of the most important things you can do when you get behind the wheel of your vehicle or ride with another person as a passenger. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published a list of important facts about seat belts that all drivers in Tennessee should know, which includes the following:
- 84 percent of Tennessee drivers and passenger wear seat belts.
According to a 2012 study, most people in Tennessee wear their seat belts on a regular basis. However, 86 percent of people nationwide wear their seat belts, which means Tennessee drivers and passengers have room for improvement to reach the national average.
- Seat belt laws in Tennessee are primary laws.
Primary laws are laws that give police officers cause for pulling over drivers if they notice a traffic or roadway violation. That means an officer in Tennessee can initiate a traffic stop if he or she notices that a driver or passenger isn’t buckled up in a car. In many other states, officers can only issue tickets and citations for seat belt violations if the driver was pulled over for other reasons.
- Nighttime enforcement helps protect drivers.
Police are particularly watchful of drivers and passengers at night, as seat belt violations and serious crashes are most likely to occur after sunset. This knowledge allows police departments and highway patrol officers to better enforce seat belt laws throughout the Volunteer State by concentrating their resources in specific places and during specific time periods.
- Child restraint laws require that children ride in proper restraint devices.
Tennessee law also requires that children be properly restrained in vehicles via car seats and booster seats. Children up to the age of 8 years old or until they reach a height and weight where seat belts fit properly must be restrained in the backseats of vehicles.
Modern vehicles are equipped with many important safety features. Airbags, anti-lock brakes, shatter-resistant glass, and even collision detection and avoidance systems can all make a big difference when it comes to preventing or reducing the impact of collisions. However, no safety feature is as effective at reducing the risk of serious injuries and death as seat belts. Law enforcement in Tennessee and throughout the country place a big emphasis on making sure all drivers and passengers are buckled up at all times to help protect all motorists.
Although safety features like seat belts are highly effective at decreasing the likelihood of injuries, people can still get hurt even when they’re buckled up—especially when other drivers are careless. If you or someone you love was injured in an auto accident caused by a negligent driver, you may be eligible to file a claim for compensation. To find out how our experienced Murfreesboro auto accident attorneys can help you, contact Matt Hardin Law today by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form.