Science: Fleeing the Whirlwind

Though forecasters had issued warnings an hour in advance, 47 people died and hundreds of others were injured last April when a monstrous tornado demolished large sections of Wichita Falls, Texas. Curious about just how the casualties had occurred, a team of epidemiologists, most of them from the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, decided to investigate. Their study, published in Science, shows that 26 of the deaths and 30 of the most serious injuries occurred in motor vehicles. Most of these victims had tried to outrace the storm, many of them apparently influenced by longstanding federal guidelines that urge motorists...

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