CDC: Extreme Weather Kills Thousands Each Year in U.S.
(HealthDay News) — Heat waves, heat stroke, or sun stroke caused nearly one-third of more than 10,600 weather-related deaths reported between 2006–2010, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Hypothermia accounted for 63% of those weather-related deaths. The others died in floods, storms, or from lightning strikes, CDC researchers said.
The researchers found that death rates varied by age – people over 75 were especially vulnerable – race and gender. Moreover, the risk of dying from heat or cold was highest among the poorest Americans. In terms of region, three-quarters of the nation's heat deaths occurred in the South and West. And the Northeast accounted for the smallest proportion of cold-related deaths.
"In this report, we examined weather-related deaths over a five-year period. The time period studied is not long enough for us to draw conclusions about trends in weather-related deaths," Shubhayu Saha, PhD, a health scientist in the climate and health program at the National Center for Environmental Health, told HealthDay.