Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Struck By Lightning

How many Americans are killed or injured by lightning strikes?
The National Weather Service publication Storm Data recorded a total of 449 deaths from lightning strikes between 1998 and 2008. According to the National Weather Service, lightning causes an average of 62 deaths and 300 injuries in the United States each year.


Elsewhere, the intolerable Josh Sugarmann at the Violence Policy Center claims that in 2007-2009, holders of concealed handgun permits murdered 85 people. That's an average of 28 people a year.

The point is clear: you are more likely to be struck and killed by lightning than you are to be murdered by a CHP-holder. Twice as likely.

I should point out that not all of the 85 deaths have been fully investigated or adjudicated yet; some may turn out to be self-defense or accidents. And not all of the slayings involved guns.

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