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Commuter Dude: Tracking accidents on your I-85 commute

GWINNETT CO -- 11Alive's Commuter Dude spent hours scouring two years worth of crash data, and discovered an increase in accidents and fatalities I-85 in Gwinnett County from 2012 to 2013.

Last year saw more than 2,500 accidents on that 30 mile stretch of interstate, up more than 400 from the previous year.

There were 7 fatalities, up from one the year before.

Authorities blame many of the accidents on distracted drivers.

Later this year, the state DOT will begin construction on auxiliary lanes between Jimmy Carter Boulevard and Indian Trail. The added lanes should help eliminate some of the weaving that takes place with traffic exiting and entering I-85.

The Highway Patrol has also added troopers to the interstate.

Mercer law grad murder trial to start in April

Mercer law grad murder trial to start in April

MACON, Ga. -- Bibb Superior Court Judge Howard Simms says he's scheduled Stephen McDaniel's murder trial for April 28.

McDaniel is accused of killing his Mercer Law classmate and neighbor Lauren Giddings in June 2011.

His lawyers filed a change of venue request last month, and prosecutors agreed to it. However, Simms says he has not made a decision on moving the trial to a courthouse outside of Bibb. Another option would be to bring in jurors from another county in Georgia.

91 Georgia counties under state of emergency for winter storm

ATLANTA -- Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has extended the state of emergency due to a Winter Storm Warning and Ice Storm Warning in effect.

Deal announced Tuesday morning that he added 44 counties to the original 45.

USA Today Metro Atlanta Super 25 Girls Poll

ATLANTA-- The latest installment of the USA Today Metro Atlanta Super 25 Girls Poll is ready for inspection. There are changes and new faces, but the name at the top in unchanged.

 McEachern leads the way with Southwest DeKalb second again this week. Redan, Archer, and Parkview make up the top 5.

Wesleyan, Tucker, Hillgrove, Norcross, and North Forsyth complete the top 10.

The Metro Atlanta Super 25 Girls Poll is computer generated and produced exclusively for 11Alive News and 11 Alive.com by USA Today High School Sports.

 

 

USA Today Metro Atlanta Super 25 Boys Poll

ATLANTA--The latest edition of the USA Today Metro Atlanta Super 25 Poll is here. With region tournament time just around the corner, the name at the top stays the same.

 The Spartans of Greater Atlanta Christian top the charts, with Allatoona, Wheeler, North Gwinnett and Norcross making up the top 5.

Miller Grove is next, with Hillgrove, Tucker, Berkmar, and Grayson climbing into the top 10 this week.

The Metro Atlanta Super 25 Poll is computer generated, and is produced exclusively for 11Alive News and 11Alive.com by USA Today High School Sports.

Will you have to pay if your abandoned car was towed?

METRO ATLANTA -- With so many abandoned cars during #snowjam2014 this week, communities are towing cars to get traffic flowing.

Here's the list of who will have to pay and who will get a pass if cars were towed off the road.

Atlanta:
The Atlanta Police Department said they will not begin towing vehicles until Sunday Feb. 2 at noon. APD will waive vehicle impound fees associated with the winter weather. If your car was towed call the Atlanta Property Unit at 404-546-4330.

DeKalb:
Towing fees will be reimbursed for stranded cars. Drivers have until Midnight Friday to claim towed cars. Contact the DeKalb Police Department's Permit office at 404-297-3934 to file for reimbursement. 

Unincorporated Fulton:
They are only towing cars to the side of the road where it was abandoned; they are not sending them to impound lots. If you cannot find your car call the police department at 404-613-5711.

Unemployment plunges to 6.8 percent

Unemployment plunges to 6.8 percent

(WXIA) -- Metro Atlanta's unemployment rate was 6.8 percent in December, down from 7.0 percent in November.

The Georgia Department of Labor announced the new figures Thursday morning.

December's unemployment rate was 6.1 percent in Gwinnett County.

Georgia Department of Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said the rate decreased because nearly 11,200 more Atlanta residents were employed in December, and the number of jobs in the area grew to 2,450,000 -- the most since May 2008.

December's unemployment rate was also down considerably from the December 2012 rate of 8.4 percent.

Metro Athens had Georgia's lowest jobless rate in December at 5.2 percent. The highest was 10.2 percent in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha region.