Chattanooga sees significant increase in traffic fatalities in 2018

Chattanooga Police Chief David Roddy, left, stands with other law enforcement as Erlanger Trauma Services Dr. Robert Maxwell, center, speaks about road safety outside Erlanger's Emergency Department on Wednesday.

With a significant rise in traffic fatalities this year, state and local law enforcement and emergency personnel are warning drivers to use extra caution ahead of the holidays.

The city has seen 27 traffic fatalities this year, Chattanooga police Chief David Roddy said Wednesday. Last year by this time, there had been 18. That is a 33 percent increase.

"That's 27 families that, over the course of this year, a husband or a wife, a mother, a father, a son or a daughter, did not come home," Roddy said. "... It wasn't that they just didn't come home that night, those individuals did not come home for this holiday, and they won't come home for any of them."