201705fsu-tornado.jpgMay 24, 2017 (Source: FSU) - New research out of Florida State University shows that the strength of a tornado has a significantly larger effect than population on the number of casualties. “It’s somewhat surprising because we’re led to believe it’s just a problem with exposure — the more people in the way the more casualties,” said James Elsner, chair of the FSU Department of Geography and Earl & Sofia Shaw Professor. That’s not the case, according to this latest study. Using a regression model, researchers found that on average a doubling of the population under the path of a tornado leads to a 21 percent increase in the casualty rate, while a doubling of the energy dispersed by the tornado leads to a 33 percent increase in the casualty rate.

FSU News Release

Geophysical Research Letters Journal Article