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Alabama Department of Transportation officials say more than half of the people killed in car crashes last year were not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. State officials released a report based on preliminary data from the Alabama State Troopers indicating that 59 percent of people who died in traffic accidents in 2012 were not wearing seatbelts. Officials say 424 traffic fatality victims were in vehicles where seatbelts were available and 251 were not wearing them at the time of the crash. Officials say a total of 513 people died in crashes investigated by state troopers in 2012. The data also showed 41 people were killed in vehicle crashes in March in the Alabama.
Traveling on Interstate 20 east of Birmingham is about to get tougher in the coming months. Al.com reports a $38.5 million dollar project to upgrade lanes of the roadway will begin April 8th. The work is expected to take three months and will require detours as portions of I-20 are closed to traffic during construction. A spokeswoman with Alabama DOT says the last major roadwork project done on this portion of I-20 was in 1974.
A 4-year-old boy is dead after a shooting in Pritchard. A Mobile TV station reports the child shot himself in the chest accidentally. His parents rushed him to USA Children's and Women's Hospital, where he died. The child and his family had just left Easter services at a church and were visiting relatives when the shooting occurred.
A former school superintendent in central Alabama has been asked to repay nearly $80,000 dollars after a state audit determined his buyout was unauthorized. An Examiners of Public Accounts audit found the Autauga County Board of Education did not have the authority to offer a buyout to former superintendent Greg Faulkner in April of 2012.