WRAL WeatherCenter Blog

Minority of tornadoes responsible for most fatalities

Posted April 14

— Many people associate tornadoes with destruction and death, but the majority of storms don’t typically result in fatalities.

WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said that the weakest tornadoes, category F0 and F1, account for 80 percent of all tornadoes that touch down, but account for only 3 percent of storm-related deaths.

Category F2 tornadoes account for 16 percent of all tornadoes and 21 percent of all death while the strongest storms- category F3 or highe- account for only 4 percent of all tornadoes but are responsible for 76 percent of all deaths.

When tornadoes ripped through the state in 2011, only 16 percent of the day’s 30 tornadoes were categorizes as an F3 or higher but they were responsible for 83 percent of tornado-related deaths that day.


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