Tennessee Highway Patrol prepares for heavy traffic during Thanksgiving

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — We all know how crazy the roads can get this time of year. Holiday travel is now well under way with just hours to go before Thanksgiving is here.

That's why the Tennessee Highway Patrol is out in full force on I-40.

That's right, you know the goal for the Tennessee Highway Patrol is to keep people safe, and this is a hectic time to be out driving - especially on a heavily traveled highway such as I-40.

In fact, on this very day last year there were 54 crashed on I-40 in Tennessee.

It started at noon today when troopers began watching I-40 to catch potential speeders.

That silver van in the number one lane is running 84 miles an hour.

The trooper radios his partner who then gives chase and makes the stop. It's all part of the Tennessee Highway Patrols participation in a nationwide holiday travel initiative to keep people safe.

"We make sure people are driving like they're supposed to. No bad habits. No speeding," said Christopher Richardson with the Tennessee Highway Patrol. "No driving under the influence. No driving distracted."

Right now, there is a trooper covering every 20 mile section of I-40 in Tennessee. Other states I-40 runs through are doing the same.

"Anytime you got more cars on the road, that's just more chance for a crash to occur," said Richardson. "Mix in those bad habits you got a recipe for disaster."

The day before Thanksgiving saw a lot of crashes on Tennessee's stretch of I-40 last year, but thankfully no one died.

"It's always more than one life at risk out here when you're traveling," said Richardson.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol has this advice for travelers.

"Best thing people can do is plan ahead, leave with plenty of time to get there and practice save driving habits," said Richardson.

Troopers are also going to be stationed every 20 miles on Sunday as lot of people return home, so if you're using I-40 this holiday, be aware.