Buzz: Slow week for new flu cases; season continues until mid-May. Gas prices: A quarter more a gallon vs. a month ago; same as a year ago.

Buzz: Slow week for new flu cases; season continues until mid-May. Gas prices: A quarter more a gallon vs. a month ago; same as a year ago.

Some better news on flu cases for the week ending March 2, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health. In addition to no new fatalities, the metro area did not see any hospitalizations related to the flu. Since Sept. 30, 1,231 people have been hospitalized and 17 people have died.

During the 2017-18 season, there were a total of 3,139 hospitalized and 151 deaths. The previous season, 2016-17, there were nine flu deaths and 1,484 hospitalizations.

Flu deaths: Since Sept. 30, 17 people have died in Georgia from the flu including nine people 65 or older; five people 50 through 64; two people ages 18 through 49; and one person ages 5 through 17.

Even with a relatively slow week with no hospitalizations reported and no additional deaths, flu cases are considered “widespread” in Georgia with three new outbreaks during the reporting period.

For more:  Click Flu Watch


Gas prices climb, now equal to same point a year ago: A month ago, you were paying roughly 25 cents less a gallon for gas than you are today. That’s about a $3.75 difference in filling up today vs. a year ago (assuming a 15-gallon tank). Local and state prices are now about the same as they were in early March 2018 with additional increases likely with the onset of spring break for colleges and school systems. There’s a traditional bump around May as well as suppliers move to “cleaner” summer gas, which is said to cost more to produce.

AAA says Georgia drivers are now paying an average price of $2.37 per gallon of regular unleaded.

“Gasoline supplies are beginning to tighten as refineries conduct seasonal¬†maintenance and switch to summer-blend gasoline,” said Mark Jenkins, spokesman, AAA – The Auto Club Group. “These seasonal factors are likely to keep upward pressure on prices at the pump this week. The state average could rise another 5 cents as a result.”

A Sunday survey of local pump prices, courtesy of Georgia Gas Prices,  shows these lowest prices:

Floyd: $2.19 at Marathon on Kingston Highway; cash only.

Bartow: $2.29 at four locations, all in Cartersville.

Gordon: $2.29 at Pilot (I-75 and U.S. 41)

Polk: $2.25 at Citgo in Cedartown.

Chattooga: $2.27 at Hi-Tech in Summerville.

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