Information on Tornado Deaths

Though CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics does not have specific data on tornado deaths, we do have data from our mortality database on deaths from “cataclysmic storms,” which includes tornado deaths (International Classification of Diseases Code X-37). This specific ICD code includes blizzards, hurricanes and tornadoes, but doesn’t separate deaths by tornadoes alone.

Below is a chart from our WONDER database that shows how many deaths occurred under ICD Code X-37 from 1999 to 2010.  There are a few things to observe from these data: First, according the National Oceanic Atmospheric Association, the spike in deaths in 1999 was a result of 93 tornado deaths.  There was also another spike in X-37 deaths which occurred in 2005 during Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita, the notorious storms that devastated the Gulf Coast.  Finally, the 2008 spike in deaths was a result of 125 tornado fatalities that year.

Deaths

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