Associated Press

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's highway deaths in 2011 stayed below 1,000 for just the third time in 48 years.

Preliminary figures released by the Tennessee Department of Safety show the state had 947 traffic-related deaths last year. According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, that could make 2011 the safest year on Tennessee roads in nearly a half century.

Last year's preliminary figure is six more than the total in 1963, when the state was less populated and fewer cars were on the road.

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