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New twister on tornado risk: Florida, Southeast have highest death rates per mile, study shows

  • Tornado Risk-1.jpg

    FILE - This May 23, 2011 file photo shows an American flag flying over the remains of a tornado-ravaged neighborhood in Tuscaloosa, Ala., a month after a killer storms in Alabama. Oklahoma and Kansas may have the reputation as tornado hotspots, but Florida and the rest of the Southeast are far more vulnerable to killer twisters, a new analysis shows. (AP Photo/Jay Reeves, File) (The Associated Press)

  • Tornado Risk-2.jpg

    FILE - This Oct. 19, 2011 file photo shows a damaged house in Sunrise, Fla. after a possible tornado damaged more than two dozen houses in the area. Oklahoma and Kansas may have the reputation as tornado hotspots, but Florida and the rest of the Southeast are far more vulnerable to killer twisters, a new analysis shows. (AP Photo/J Pat Carter, File) (The Associated Press)

Oklahoma and Kansas may have the reputation as tornado hot spots, but a new analysis shows that Florida and the rest of the Southeast are far more vulnerable to killer twisters.

Florida leads the country in deaths calculated per mile a tornado races along the ground, followed by Tennessee, North Carolina, Ohio and Alabama.

Southeast Regional Climate Center director Charles Konrad II, who headed the analysis, said the heart of Dixie is where more people die from tornadoes than anywhere else in the world.

Kornad said Florida tornadoes aren't plentiful or strong, but the state leads the nation in so many factors that add to the danger, especially vulnerable populations of people in mobile homes, the elderly, and the poor.

The analysis was presented at a weather conference this week.

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