HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A 30-year-old man is dead after a crash on Route 301 in Hanover County, during a time in which the Richmond area has seen an uptick in fatal crashes.

According to the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, 30-year-old Martin Cheatham IV of Mechanicsville died when he was involved in a head-on crash with a utility truck on Saturday, Jan. 7.

On Saturday, Jan. 7, at approximately 7:02 a.m., deputies with the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office responded to Hanover Courthouse Road on Route 301, just north of Stumpy Road for a crash that killed one driver. Credit: Howard Williams/8News

Cheatham was a member of the James Madison University football team from 2011 to 2015. The team sent their condolences to Cheatham’s family on Sunday, Jan. 8.

This crash is just one of a string of crashes in the Richmond area since the start of the new year, many of which have been fatal.

On the night of Friday, Dec. 30, 2022, a pedestrian was hit by a driver on Broad Street Road in Goochland County. Minutes later, another driver crashed into emergency vehicles that had been sent to the scene.

At around 1 a.m. on Sunday, Jan. 1, a Chesterfield Police officer was hit by an impaired driver on Iron Bridge Road and is now recovering.  

Photo: Chesterfield Police

Later that same day, Henrico police responded to the intersection of Staples Mill Road and Old Staples Mill Road at around 11 p.m. after a truck driver hit and killed a pedestrian.

On Wednesday, Jan. 4, two students and an adult driver were sent to the hospital after a school bus crash on the Powhite Parkway Bridge in Richmond. According to police, the bus driver was heading south on Powhite Parkway when the crash took place.  

On Thursday, Jan. 5, Henrico Police arrested 30-year-old Shakeem Walker after he left VCU Medical Center hours after a single-vehicle crash that injured him and killed 28-year-old Rebecca Anne Smith. Walker, who police say was the driver of the vehicle, was charged with involuntary manslaughter.

One person is dead and another is seriously hurt after a single-car crash on Audubon Drive early Thursday morning. (Photo: Howard Williams/ 8News)

On Saturday, Jan. 7, Henrico Police responded to Ranco Road just before 8 p.m. for a report of a crash involving a pickup truck and a parked semi-trailer. The driver of the pickup, 32-year-old Yunior Morales Garcia of Henrico, was pronounced dead at the scene.

Several of these crashes are still under investigation. Police say that preliminary investigations lead them to believe speed and lack of seatbelt usage were factors in some of them.