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THP Col. Tracy Trott on Friday announced the fourth annual Interstate 40 Challenge Drive to Zero Fatalities traffic safety initiative scheduled for the Thanksgiving holiday period, according to a Tennessee Highway Patrol news release.

The I-40 Challenge consists of increased patrols from state police/highway patrol agencies along the I-40 corridor that stretches through California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina. The challenge will take place on the busiest travel days of the Thanksgiving period, specifically Wednesday, Nov. 23, and Sunday, Nov. 27.

Trott was joined by Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner David Purkey, Tennessee Department of Transportation Commissioner John Schroer and Governor's Highway Safety Office Director Vic Donoho. The announcement was held at the THP and TDOT Traffic Incident Management Track located within the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Training Center Complex in Nashville.

"Holidays are meant to be enjoyed, but they can also be a time of sadness and difficulty," said Trott. "We care about you and your families, which is why we will be working hard to make sure that you make it safely to your destination. The THP will do what we must to ensure your highway safety."  Trott added.

In addition to the I-40 Challenge, the THP will also conduct its routine Thanksgiving holiday enforcement campaign across the state. During last year's 120-hour holiday period, there were eight people killed during eight separate crashes in Tennessee, up one from the previous year. Four of those crashes involved an alcohol-impaired driver, and four were unrestrained.

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