Fire erupts, homes evacuated in Georgia train derailment

LILBURN, Ga. — A train derailment in metro Atlanta early Sunday sparked a small fire, created runoff concerns and briefly forced some residents from their homes, a fire official said.

The CSX train with about 170 cars, including three locomotives, ran off the tracks in Lilburn, according to Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services.

The fire involved “hazardous materials,” spokesperson Justin Wilson said. The agency shared photos on social media of smoky air over buildings in the city northeast of downtown Atlanta.

It was unclear what exactly the train cars were carrying but crews were continuing “atmospheric monitoring” after evacuation orders were lifted around 6 a.m. Evacuations had begun around 2 a.m.

Two employees involved in the derailment were able to get to safety and were being evaluated for possible injuries, the agency said in a Facebook post. No injuries were immediately reported.

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Georgia Homeowners: Your Bathroom Remodel Checklist

This post is sponsored and contributed by a Patch Brand Partner. The views expressed in this post are the author’s own.

Thinking of renovating your bathroom? Be sure to take these steps first.
Thinking of renovating your bathroom? Be sure to take these steps first. (Shutterstock)

But before you pick up the phone to start interviewing bathroom remodelers, you’ll want to think through some of the details. Here’s what to do first.

1. Plan Your Design

While professional bathroom remodelers will be able to help you make structural decisions, it’s wise for you to know ahead of time what you’d like the end result to look like. Do a little brainstorming to come up with concrete ideas, like, “I’d like a freestanding tub and separate shower,” or “I prefer a pedestal sink to a drop-in model.”

Browse sites like Pinterest for inspiration as to layout, aesthetics, and materials. Save some photos to show your contractor and point out what you like about them.

2. Determine The Contractors You’ll Need

You might think one firm can come in and tackle your entire bathroom remodel. While some can, it is better in many instances to hire a few specialty contractors. Contrary to popular belief, this can actually save money and increase the longevity of your remodel.

So, first think about who you will need: a custom millworker, plumber, bath fitter, etc.

Need a professional bathroom remodeler? Find an expert near you.

3. Look Into Necessary Permits

Small-scale bathroom remodels most likely won’t call for any permits. However, large-scale projects may require building permits, which you can obtain through your local government offices.

Also, keep in mind that many local governments require electrical wiring to be inspected. Look into

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Georgia steers virus aid to care homes as rapid tests arrive

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced Friday that $113 million in federal coronavirus relief funds will be made available to nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

The funding will be used to bolster staffing and staff testing in facilities across the state, according to news release from Kemp’s office.

Georgia received approximately $4.1 billion in federal funding as part of the CARES Act, passed by Congress in March to provide economic assistance to address the pandemic. The state had approximately $2.1 billion of that left before Friday’s announcement, Kemp spokesman Cody Hall said. Funding can be used to cover costs incurred up until Dec. 30.

Residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic.

As of Thursday, over 2,530 residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities with 25 beds or more had died after contracting the coronavirus, according to data from the state Department of Community Health, out of roughly 7,060 total virus deaths across Georgia. Over 14,400 facility residents have tested positive for the virus, along with over 7,650 staff members.

For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms. But for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

“The $113 million in Coronavirus relief funds we are announcing today will make $78 million available to nursing homes to meet current federal testing requirements,” Kemp said in a statement. “In addition to the $36 million the state has provided to nursing homes and long term care facilities in staff augmentation since April, the state is also committing up to an additional $35 million in staffing support through the end of 2020 to ensure facilities have the personnel necessary to safely provide care to their residents.”

In mid-September,

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