2011 already Virginia's 2nd deadliest year for tornadoes

Tuesday - 5/3/2011, 7:04am EDT

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - April's killer tornadoes have made 2011 the second deadliest year in Virginia since modern records began in 1950.

The National Weather Service has confirmed 15 tornadoes in an outbreak last week that killed five people. Another outbreak earlier in April killed two people.

Figures from the weather service and the University of Virginia show that it's the highest death toll since 1959, when 12 people were killed by a tornado on Sept. 30.

Before April's outbreaks, there had been no tornado fatalities in Virginia since April 1, 1998, when two people were killed.

Weather service meteorologist Lyle Alexander tells The Richmond Times-Dispatch that it's "rather amazing" to go 13 years without a death, and then have two fatal outbreaks in one month.


Information from: Richmond Times-Dispatch, http://www.timesdispatch.com

(Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)