(WBIR) The Tennessee Highway Patrol and Department of Safety and Homeland Security on Wednesday released the preliminary results for the first-ever Interstate 40 Challenge.
According to the state, there were no fatalities on Interstate 40 during the special safety challenge. However, officials said preliminary reports show eight crash-related deaths on Tennessee roads outside of the official challenge hours.
As part of the challenge, Tennessee and seven other states increased patrols along I-40 from noon to midnight on Wednesday, November 27 and noon to 9 pm on Sunday, December 1,
This year, THP stationed a trooper every 20 miles as part of the increased patrol.
Across the country, other states involved in the I-40 challenge also saw promising results.
A release from the state reported that the Arizona Department of Public Safety, New Mexico State Police, Texas Department of Public Safety, Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Arkansas State Police and North Caroline Highway Patrol also reported no deaths on the selected interstate in their states during the challenge. As of Wednesday, the California Highway Patrol's numbers were not available.
In Tennessee, troopers investigated 60 crashes, arrested five people on suspicion of impaired driving and issued 126 seat belt citations during the two 12-hour periods.
Outside of the safety challenge hours, officials said preliminary reports show eight people were killed in five fatal crashes during the 102-hour Thanksgiving Holiday weekend. That's a fatality rate of one death every 12.75 hours.
In addition, authorities said two of this year's fatalities occurred in alcohol-related crashes. All eight of the people killed in Thanksgiving weekend crashes were vehicle occupants and not wearing seat belts.