Even though we call Nashville home, we have a soft spot in our hearts for Knoxville. (It was our first capital, after all.) We love the operas and the bluegrass, and we’ll root for our Volunteers no matter what city they play in. Knoxville has suffered a terrible loss; a young man named Andre Sterling died in a horrific car accident last week when his Acura flipped down an embankment.

The loss of any life because of a car accident is tragic, but Andre’s death seems even more so because of his youth. Young men in Andre’s age bracket are the most likely to be killed in car wrecks – but that doesn’t make it less devastating to those who knew and loved him.

What we can learn from Andre’s death

When we were younger, an event like this was cause for a “teachable moment.” From this tragic loss of life can come something good, if we choose to learn from it.

  1. Wear your seatbelt. When Andre’s car flipped over down the embankment, he was ejected from the seat because he was not wearing a seatbelt. Wearing a safety belt can help protect you if you’re in a terrible crash, because it keeps you held fast to the seat.
  2. Don’t speed. Speeding results in thousands of crashes every year in Tennessee. The exact speed Andre was driving was unknown, but the report says it was a “high rate of speed.”
  3. Don’t drive tired. Andre was on the road at 1:30am – and he very well may have been wide awake. But driving in the dark requires a different set of skills, and fatigued driving can have the same effects on your body as driving under the influence. If you’re too tired to drive, it’s best to stay where you are or call a cab to get you home.
  4. Always pay attention. The report says that Andre’s left wheels slipped off the road, and his accident was a result of over-correcting. When you drive, pay close attention to what your car is doing at all times. Even if you’re driven a particular road every day, there could be something different about it this time.

Our hearts go out to the Sterling family, to Andre’s friends and loved ones, and to the city of Knoxville.

If you want more information about the primary causes of car accidents, please give us a call.