Preliminary 2011 Lightning Fatality Total in the U.S.

The National Weather Service's preliminary count of last year's weather-related fatalities indicates that 2011 will be a record low year for lightning fatalities.  We have confirmed 26 fatalities across the United States and Territories in 2011.  The previous lowest number of lightning fatalities occurred in 2008 when 28 people died.

Fortunately, the downward trend in lightning fatalities that we've seen for more than 40 years is continuing.  The record low in lightning fatalities is in stark contrast to the 2011 fatalities for many of the other weather hazards.

In large part, the reduction in lightning fatalities is due to the efforts of many people and organizations who help educate the public on the dangers of lightning and make the public more aware of lightning safety recommendations.  Undoubtedly, the benefits of all these efforts are being realized.  

Ellen Bryan and her sister teamed with NOAA/National Weather Service in 2009 to make a Public Service Announcement to promote lightning safety, and  Ellen has continued her efforts since then.  Ellen's sister Christina was struck by lightning more than 10 years ago and suffers serious and permanent brain damage from the incident.

Information above was provided by John Jensenius of the NWS.


Below are two tables, the first one depicts the number of directly-related fatalities in Wisconsin due to various weather events.  The second table shows the number of directly-related injuries.  Fatalities and injuries associated with vehicle accidents on slippery/icy roads during winter storms are not included.

Wisconsin Weather-related Fatalities (1982-2011) 

Year
Tornado
Wind
Hail
Flooding
Lightning
Heat Waves
Winter Storms
Cold Waves
1982
0
1
0
0
2
0
1
6
1983
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1984
12
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
1985
4
1
0
0
3
0
0
4
1986
0
1
0
1
0
1/0
0
0
1987
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
1988
0
0
0
0
3
1/0
0
0
1989
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
1990
0
1
0
0
1
0
0
0
1991
1
1
0
0
1
0
2
0
1992
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1993
0
0
0
1
1
2
0
0
1994
4
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1995
0
0
0
0
2
82/72
0
3
1996
1
1
0
0
0
0
0
10
1997
0
2
0
0
2
1/0
0
1
1998
0
7
0
2
0
0
0
0
1999
0
2
0
0
1
13/8
1
0
2000
0
1
0
1
1
0
0
0
2001
2
0
0
0
1
10/5
0
0
2002
0
1
0
0
1
3/5
0
0
2003
0
0
0
0
1
0/4
0
0
2004
1
1
0
1
0
0/0
0
0
2005
1
1
0
0
0
0/0
0
0
2006
0
1
0
0
2
3/1
0
0
2007
0
0
0
0
1
0/0
0
0
2008
0
0
0
1
0
0/0
0
4
2009
0
0
0
0
1
0/0
0
6
2010
0
1
0
1
0
0/0
1
1
2011
1
1
0
1
1
5
1
 0 
Total
28
26
0
9
25
121/95
6
38

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the table above, two numbers are provided for heat waves - the first one is directly-related fatalities and the second number is indirectly-related fatalities.

Wisconsin Weather-related Injuries (1982-2011) 

Year
Tornado
Wind
Hail
Flooding
Lightning
Heat Waves
Winter Storms
Cold Waves
1982
5
3
0
0
2
-
0
0
1983
10
33
0
0
14
-
0
0
1984
247
6
1
0
2
-
0
0
1985
82
2
0
0
4
-
0
0
1986
1
1
0
0
2
-
0
0
1987
1
7
0
0
12
-
0
0
1988
4
4
0
0
9
-
0
0
1989
5
10
0
0
10
-
0
0
1990
3
5
0
0
13
-
0
0
1991
6
2
0
0
9
-
0
0
1992
61
3
0
0
3
-
0
0
1993
0
0
0
0
10
-
0
0
1994
55
5
0
0
8
-
0
0
1995
1
21
0
3
9
300 +
1
21
1996
13
8
0
1
15
-
3
28
1997
2
20
0
0
8
-
0
3
1998
30
69
2
5
6
-
14
0
1999
3
9
0
1
15
155+
31
0
2000
16
6
38
1
4
-
0
0
2001
17
6
0
0
7
80+
0
0
2002
30
2
0
1
4
-
0
0
2003
1
1
0
0
12
-
0
0
2004
17
5
0
0
1
-
0
0
2005
27
2
0
0
11
-
0
0
2006
1
2
0
0
10
-
0
0
2007
4
1
1
0
0
-
0
0
2008
21
9
0
0
3
-
0
0
2009
0
1
0
0
1
-
2
2
2010
22
22
0
1
3
-
0
0
2011
6
10
0
0
0
108
0
0
Total
691
275
42
13
208
-
51
54

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fatality & Injury totals in Wisconsin provided by Rusty Kapela, WFO Milwaukee/Sullivan



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