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What Is The Deadliest Weather-Related Event?

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Tornado Manteno

CHICAGO (CBS) — Would you be more likely to die in a heat wave or a tornado?

Sorry, it’s not the most uplifting question to contemplate.

However, we here at cbschicago found the results interesting.

If you thought tornado …

You would be wrong.

According to AccuWeather, more people on average die from heat waves than any other weather event.

Here are the numbers, which are an annual average of heat-related fatalities over the past 10 years.

Heat: 117 deaths

Tornado: 109 deaths

Flood: 76 deaths

Lightning: 35 deaths

Cold: 27 deaths

One of the deadliest heat waves in U.S. history happened in Chicago in July, 1995 when about 750 people died over a five-day period.

At one point, the temperature hit 106 at Midway Airport on July 13. Heat indexes of 120 degrees and higher were reported.

Many of the victims died in residences without air conditioning and in rooms where windows were sealed shut. Most of them lived in poor neighborhoods in the city and didn’t open widows because of crime fears.

To make matters worse, temperatures didn’t cool down at night, with lows on those days in the 80s and 90s.

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