CDOT presents plan to widen section of I-25

 

The Colorado Department of Transportation is having a public discussion over its plans to widen a dangerous stretch of I-25 between Castle Rock and Monument.

CDOT calls it ‘the gap’ because it has just two lanes on each side, unlike the wider sections in Denver and Colorado Springs.

It’s also known for fatal crashes, including those that killed State Troopers Cody Donahue and Jaimie Jursevics.

On any given day, about 68,000 people are on this stretch of interstate, but the last time it was updated was in the 1950s.

Changes could include adding more lanes and widening the shoulder to make it safer for drivers, first responders and create more room for a growing population.

RELATED: Should CDOT widen I-25 between Monument and Castle Rock?

On Thursday evening, drivers were willing to spend time maneuvering the same interstate that’s given them so much grief to make it to Colorado Department of Transportation’s public meeting

“In one weeks’ time I was behind four different accidents,” said Robin Corran, who travels from south of Colorado Springs to Castle Rock for work every day.

For those at the meeting, the maps of I-25 connecting the two biggest cities in the state were more than just maps. It’s their morning commute and gridlock they sit in.

“I’ve gone off the road a couple times because of snow,” said Corran.

The road problems are expanding along with Colorado’s population, which is expected to reach eight million people in the next 20 years.

“It’s outdated and needs to be improved,” said Bob Wilson with CDOT.

CDOT is taking a close look at the interstate from Lone Tree to Monument, paying particularly close attention to the 17 miles in between Castle Rock and Monument where the interstate shrinks. They’re studying what it will take to expand it from two lanes in each direction to three along with widening the shoulder and median.

“We’ve had fire trucks hit and ambulances hit,” said Larkspur Fire Protection District Chief Stuart Mills. “A lot of firefighters at Larkspur Fire Protection District say they would rather run into a burning building then go out onto I-25.”

His men and women responded when Colorado State Trooper Cody Donahue was hit and killed on this same stretch of road in November—and the year before when Trooper Jaimie Jursevics was hit and killed by a drunk driver.

Preliminary reports indicate there have been eight fatal accidents on the section of interstate under study so far this year.

The project could cost up to 600 million dollars with no funding in place yet. CDOT says it’s up to state legislators to figure that out as they continue their study

“It’s a good start and they’ve got a long way to go,” said Matt Krimmer the Town Manager for Larkspur, which is half-way between Monument and Castle Rock.

The plan is to complete the study by 2018. If funding is secured, CDOT can move ahead with construction.

So far, all possibilities are on the table including making this stretch of interstate toll lanes.

The next public meeting on the issue is scheduled for spring.

CREDITS (© 2017 KUSA)

U.S. roads keep getting more dangerous

Image result for U.S. roads keep getting more dangerous

The crisis on U.S. roads shows no sign of letting up.

New government estimates project that for the second straight year, the United States will see the largest leap in motor vehicle fatalities in 50 years.

In the first nine months of 2016, the Department of Transportation estimates that 27,875 people died in motor vehicle crashes. That’s an 8% increase from the same timeframe in 2015.

U.S. roads are still significantly safer than decades ago, but government officials are concerned and want to halt the reversal in improving fortunes. In 2015, there was a 7.2% spike in traffic fatalities, the largest gain the nation had seen in 50 years.

Related: Why more people are suddenly dying on U.S. roads

Fatality rates dipped to all time lows during the Great Recession. Tough economic conditions are known to lead to fewer traffic deaths as people are less likely to be driving to jobs.

As the economy recovered, experts knew traffic fatalities would rise. But they say the rash of fatalities in 2015 and 2016 isn’t just about an improving economy or lower gas prices. Some experts have suggested that distracted driving and warmer weather are to blame.

In a briefing with reporters, government officials called for more data and more analysis to get to the bottom of the spike in deaths.

“We hope we can find some data sources out there in the private sector that can help us understand what’s happening on our roads,” said Dan Morgan, chief data officer at the Department of Transportation.

Brian Teffi, a traffic safety researcher with AAA, called for states to compile more detailed drug test data on crash victims. He pointed to research in Washington state that found a recent spike in victims with marijuana in their systems. But drug testing of crash victims isn’t consistent around the country, making it harder for traffic experts to draw any hard conclusions about the role of drugs in crashes.

#HelpGA: How you can help Georgia tornado victims

Residents across south central and southwest Georgia are beginning the long road to recovery after devastating tornadoes tore through much of the region over the weekend.

At least 15 people in Georgia were killed and 43 injured after furious storms lashed the area.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has issued a state of emergency for 16 counties impacted by the weekend’s severe storms.

The American Red Cross is mobilizing its resources and volunteers to help those impacted. You can help.

11Alive is teaming up with our sister stations WMAZ (Macon) and First Coast News (Jacksonville, Fla.) to  raise funds for those in need after the storm.

 

DONATE BY MAIL: If you want to ensure that your donation is designated specifically for Georgia, write a check and put “Georgia Tornadoes” in the memo line.  Click here for the check donation form

ONLINE: Click here to donate to Red Cross Disaster Relief

BY TEXT: Text Red Cross to 90999 to make a $10 donation to Red Cross Disaster Relief from your phone

Help Georgia, help your neighbors. Use #HELPGA when sharing this online.

 

RELATED | Click here to check in and let your friends and family know you’re safe

Three Red Cross shelters are open in Georgia:

Shelter locations are:

COOK COUNTY:

First Baptist Church of Adel
200 E FIFTH ST
Adel, GA 31620

People interested in donating items and supplies can drop off at:

First Assembly of God Church
601 Massee Post Rd
Adel, GA 31620

DOUGHERTY COUNTY:·

Albany Civic Center
100 W. Oglethorpe Blvd.
Albany, GA 31701

People interested in donating items and supplies (not food/water) can drop off at:

            Any Goodwill location

TURNER COUNTY:

·       Turner County Civic Center

354 Lamar St.

Ashburn, GA 31714

 

We continue to pray for the families! lets get together and support the state of Georgia.

Image result for pray for georgia

 

photo credits to WALB 

Self driving car?

Image result for tesla carsImage result for tesla carsImage result for tesla cars   download.jpeg

Tesla Motors was founded in 2003 by a group of engineers in Silicon Valley who wanted to prove that electric cars could be better than gasoline-powered cars. With instant torque, incredible power, and zero emissions, Tesla’s products would be cars without compromise. Each new generation would be increasingly affordable, helping the company work towards its mission: to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable transport.

Tesla’s engineers first designed a powertrain for a sports car built around an AC induction motor, patented in 1888 by Nikola Tesla, the inventor who inspired the company’s name. The resulting Tesla Roadster was launched in 2008. Accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds and achieving a range of 245 miles per charge of its lithium ion battery, the Roadster set a new standard for electric mobility. Tesla would sell more than 2,400 Roadsters, now on the road in more than 30 countries.

In 2012, Tesla launched Model S, the world’s first premium electric sedan. Built from the ground up to be 100 percent electric, Model S has redefined the very concept of a four-door car. With room for seven passengers and more than 64 cubic feet of storage, Model S provides the comfort and utility of a family sedan while achieving the acceleration of a sports car: 0 to 60 mph in about five seconds. Its flat battery pack is integrated into the chassis and sits below the occupant cabin, lending the car a low center of gravity that enables outstanding road holding and handling while driving 265 miles per charge. Model S was named Motor Trend’s 2013 Car of the Year and achieved a 5-star safety rating from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

In late 2014, Tesla CEO Elon Musk unveiled two dual motor all-wheel drive configurations of Model S that further improve the vehicle’s handling and performance. The 85D features a high efficiency motor at the front and rear, giving the car unparalleled control of traction in all conditions. The P85D pairs a high efficiency front motor with a performance rear motor for supercar acceleration, achieving a 0 to 60 mph time of 3.2 seconds – the fastest four-door production car ever made.

Tesla owners enjoy the benefit of charging at home so they never have to visit a gas station or spend a cent on gasoline. For long distance journeys, Tesla’s Supercharger network provides convenient and free access to high speed charging, replenishing half a charge in as little as 20 minutes. Superchargers now connect popular routes in North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific.

Tesla’s vehicles are produced at its factory in Fremont, California, previously home to New United Motor Manufacturing Inc., a joint venture between Toyota and General Motors. The Tesla Factory has returned thousands of jobs to the area and is capable of producing 2,000 cars a week.

The company is expanding its manufacturing footprint into other areas, including in Tilburg, the Netherlands, where it has an assembly facility, and Lathrop, California, where it has a specialized production plant. To reduce the costs of lithium ion battery packs, Tesla and key strategic partners including Panasonic have begun construction of a gigafactory in Nevada that will facilitate the production of a mass-market affordable vehicle, Model 3. By 2018, the gigafactory will produce more lithium ion cells than all of the world’s combined output in 2013. The gigafactory will also produce battery packs intended for use in stationary storage, helping to improve robustness of the electrical grid, reduce energy costs for businesses and residences, and provide a backup supply of power.

Tesla is not just an automaker, but also a technology and design company with a focus on energy innovation.

credits: tesla.com

photo credits: google.com

Snow!

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Cloudy with periods of snow late. High 39F. Winds NNE at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 70%. Snow accumulating 1 to 3 inches!

Everyone please be careful driving in the snow, always remember to drive slow and dont slam on breaks.

weather credits: weather.com

The Best and Worst Drivers by State

The Best and Worst Drivers by State

With the holiday travel season upon us, QuoteWizard paired two million data points with state fatality info to determine the best and worst driving states in the nation—and to help settle a few rivalries, too. We also ranked all 50 states based on these findings.

If you’ve ever been cut off by an idiot with an out-of-state plate and thought, “Oh, it figures,” we’ve got some data for you! See how your state, or your rival, stacks up in QuoteWizard’s study of the best and worst drivers in America.

Methodology

We sampled incident data (with more than two million data points) from the users of our website and linearly extrapolated it to Federal Highway Administration fatality data. To quantify overall driver standards for comparison, we weighted various incident counts for each state with its occurrence percentage. The final rankings are a sum of weighted means that is calculated from total accidents, speeding tickets, DUIs, citations, and fatalities.

RANKINGS:

From worst to best, here are the rankings of all 50 states. On this particular list, worst is first, so the lower a state is on this particular list, the better the drivers. And for a graphical representation of the state rankings, the darker the shade of blue appears, the worse the driving. Read more below for insights on the best (and worst) driving states in the union, as well as a look at how some state-by-state rivalries stack up when it comes to driving prowess.

Ranking (Worst) State
1 Utah
2 California
3 Virginia
4 Maine
5 Nebraska
6 South Carolina
7 North Dakota
8 Colorado
9 Washington
10 Arizona
11 Minnesota
12 Missouri
13 Kansas
14 Idaho
15 Georgia
16 Vermont
17 Ohio
18 Delaware
19 New Jersey
20 Oregon
21 Connecticut
22 Maryland
23 Wyoming
24 New Mexico
25 Wisconsin
26 New Hampshire
27 North Carolina
28 Louisiana
29 Iowa
30 Alabama
31 Texas
32 Massachusetts
33 Indiana
34 Pennsylvania
35 Tennessee
36 Alaska
37 Hawaii
38 New York
39 Montana
40 Kentucky
41 Oklahoma
42 West Virginia
43 Illinois
44 South Dakota
45 Arkansas
46 Nevada
47 Michigan
48 Mississippi
49 Florida
50 Rhode Island

The Good:

Rhode Island:

At 48 miles long and 37 miles wide, Rhode Island is famously the smallest state in the union. The state has another claim to fame with QuoteWizard: they’re America’s best drivers! It’s kind of hard to believe that a state with a reputation for potholes, nor’easters, and fiery Italian temperaments could score so highly, but it’s true. Extremely low fatalities per licensed drivers combined with good scores across the board mean that Rhode Islanders have plenty to be proud of. Of course, their excellent driving records might be due to the fact that a 20-minute drive is considered a road trip. By the time the damage is done, they’re probably past the state line and it’s Connecticut’s problem.

Florida:

Florida is best known for two things: the “Florida Man” headlines generated by its eccentric residents, and its many retirees. You wouldn’t expect either of these demographics to produce excellent driving stats, but this sunny state has the second-best driving record in the US. What’s keeping them from being number one in the country? Their fatality stats are notably higher than Rhode Island’s, but according to our data points Floridians actually get fewer citations. Of course, had we also considered the percentage of drivers operating their vehicles without car insurance, Florida wouldn’t be anywhere close to their spot in second. Nearly 24 percent of Florida motorists are uninsured! The top cities attributing to Florida being such good drivers are Orlando, Hialeah, and Miami in that order.

Mississippi:

Mississippi, have we got some good news for you: you’re home to the third-best drivers in the US! According to our data, your drivers are getting into fewer accidents—and getting fewer citations, DUIs, or speeding tickets—than more than 90 percent of America. This is good news for a state that’s used to coming in near the bottom. Mississippi also has the country’s highest poverty rate, highest unemployment rate, and lowest life expectancy in America. But at least the residents are darn good drivers.

The Bad:

Utah:

According to our data, Utah’s drivers are the worst in the union. They’re second in the rankings for both accidents and speeding, as well as fourth-worst for minor citations. Surprising for a state known for its non-drinking populace, Utah actually made the top 10 for DUIs, coming in at number nine. On the bright side, Utah missed our list of worst states for fatalities, so at least fewer people are dying in all those accidents.

California:

For a state with the most miles of interstate highway, you’d think California would have better drivers. Or maybe long commutes under a blazing sun are just a recipe for collisions and road rage. California is number seven for accidents, number nine for speeding, and number five for citations. Even worse, it’s number two for DUIs, and the second-worst state overall. Interestingly, the economy might be to blame for California’s low rankings—going to work usually means driving in California, and more driving means more accidents. Miles traveled per person increased 27 percent in Sacramento between 2009 and 2014, for example, and that could be due to the state’s economic upswing post-recession. Sacramento driver’s increase in miles traveled could be the reason for the city being the second worse driving city in the state. Oakland takes the top spot as the worst drivers in California with Anaheim coming in third.

Virginia:

Virginia is the worst state for speeding. Not too surprisingly, it’s also number two in citations. The state doesn’t make the lists for accidents or fatalities, though, which makes you wonder: are Virginians the worst drivers, or just the biggest rule breakers? Because it seems that, despite all their law-breaking, they don’t get into many fender benders. Their records are still bad enough to come in third overall for worst drivers in America, however. Of the worst driving cities in Virginia, Hampton is number one as they are the guiltiest of speeding in the state. Portsmouth comes in second followed by Richmond, and are both cities exhibiting a lead foot.

And the Rivals:

Republicans vs. Democrats

Democrats and Republicans are used to fighting over just about everything. We live in a polarized nation, and it’s easy to blame the other party for everything from the economy to ISIS. It’s also easy for our driving situations to become politically weighted. When a pickup truck with a gun rack squares off against a Prius with a Bernie Sanders bumper sticker on the highway, you can bet there are some political associations. No doubt both parties think they’re the better drivers. So like any pundit tries to parse around election time, who’s right and who’s wrong?

According to our ranks, Republican-leaning states have better drivers. We took the state electoral results from the 2016 Presidential election and the results from our incident data shows that Red states tend to have better drivers than Blue states. We took the average weighted sum of the 19 blue states and 30 red states which showed Republican-leaning states being the better drivers by a 7% margin.  Democrat-leaning states on average come in behind Republican states in terms of accidents, speeding, DUIs, fatalities, and citations overall. Good news for proud residents of red states!

East Coast vs. West Coast

Who do you think was a better driver: California’s Tupac Shakur or New York’s Biggie Smalls? Do you sing along when the Beach Boys come on the radio, or are you waiting for a Velvet Underground song? Are you more Wall Street or Silicon Valley?

Both the West Coast and East Coast have their fair to brag about, complain about, and defend. QuoteWizard wanted to find out who’s the better driver, so we stacked the Western states against the Eastern to find out. We used the same regional classifications as the US census. The Northeast Region includes the states Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. The Western states include Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington, and Hawaii.

Drumroll, please. And the winner is: East Coast! Sorry, “Best Coast,” but you missed it by a mile. After we compared the weighted scores of the two regions and accounted for the number of states in each region, the East Coast wins with a 13 percent margin of victory. Not too surprising, considering that two of the worst states—Utah and California—are on the West Coast, while the East Coast has Rhode Island, the best state overall.

South Carolina vs. North Carolina

If you’ve ever wondered who has worse drivers—South Carolina or North Carolina—the verdict is in. South Carolina, we’re afraid you’re the big loser. Number three in accidents, number three in speeding, number eight in citations, and number seven in fatalities. North Carolina doesn’t even make any of those top 10 lists. And overall, South Carolina residents are the sixth-worst drivers in the US. North Carolinians manage a respectable number 27 on the list, making them not only better drivers than their neighbors to the south, but better than those in half the other states as well. .

Michigan vs. Ohio

This has to be one of the most storied state rivalries of all time. It began with the old Toledo War of 1835, and plays out to this day between the Wolverines and the Buckeyes on the gridiron. So who are the worse drivers?

According to our data, Michigan crushes Ohio when it comes to driving ability. Michigan drivers are some of the best in the nation, coming in fourth overall. It’s pretty amazing for a state with such violent weather, but Michigan’s fatality ratings are quite low and its driving behavior commendable. Ohio, however, is the 17th worst on our list. It might be because Ohio drivers get a lot more speeding tickets—they’re number seven for worst speeding offenders nationwide—but its fatalities are also higher. Hopefully the Buckeyes will be able to compensate this season for some sub-par Ohio driving.

New Jersey vs. New York

This is one of those state rivalries that goes much deeper than sports. It’s a rivalry of identity, not to mention a fight for New Jersey’s beaches and the New York streets. Each state sometimes resents the other, but whose drivers reign supreme? We can imagine what a New York cab driver or Jersey commuter might tell you, but we know what the data says. We have to agree with Frank Sinatra on this one: New York is better.

New York is 38th on our list of worst-driving states. Otherwise put, they’re 13th best. Their good scores aren’t a huge surprise for a city that boasts the best public transit system in America (not to mention a fleet of taxi drivers who’ve been driving for decades). New Jersey, however, pulling in at the . Not only does New Jersey have extremely high fatality ratings, but they’re also third on our list for most citations. When it comes to driving, the Garden State doesn’t look so lush anymore.

How Bad Driving Affects Your Car Insurance Rates

Whether you live in one of the states with the best drivers or one of the states with the worst drivers, it’s important to have ample auto insurance. This is especially true if you call Utah, California, Virginia, or one of the nation’s other “bad-driving” states home. That’s because living alongside a lot of bad drivers can impact your insurance rates even if you’re a great one.

What can you do to combat this? Shop around and get quotes from a number of car insurance companies. That’s how you find the best rates for the coverage you need. (And don’t forget–it’s also a good idea if you live in one of the “best-driving” states highlighted here, as comparing quotes can help you save a lot of money.)

credits: https://quotewizard.com/news/posts/the-best-and-worst-drivers-by-state

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