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Three killed in lightning strike near White House

Three people, including an elderly couple celebrating their 56th wedding anniversary, were killed when lightning struck a park near the White House.

Lightning struck Lafayette Square, a small park across from the White House, on Thursday night local time. 2 men and 2 women with ‘serious life-threatening injuries’ According to a statement from the Washington Fire and Emergency Service.

All victims were taken to local hospitals, but on Friday morning, the Metropolitan Police confirmed two deaths: Donna Mueller, 75, and James Mueller, 76, from Janesville, Wisconsin. .

The couple were high school sweethearts and were in the capital to celebrate their wedding anniversary.

A third victim, a 29-year-old man, also died of injuries later on Friday, police said.

Another adult remains in critical condition.

A White House spokeswoman said the Biden administration was “sad by the tragic loss of life.”

Spokesperson Carine Jean-Pierre said in a statement: “My prayers are for those who are still fighting for their lives.

In a statement posted on social media, the U.S. Secret Service and Park Police rushed to help the four after witnessing the strike.

The victim apparently took refuge from the storm under a tree in the park.

“Trees are not safe places,” said Maggiolo. washington post.

“Anyone who takes refuge under a tree is a very dangerous place.”

Photos posted by the agency on social media showed multiple ambulances and at least one fire truck working at the scene.

Witness David Root told NBC he heard a “horrible boom.”

“I couldn’t believe it,” he is quoted as saying.

“It was surreal. I’ve never seen anything like it in my life.”

He also said he was taking refuge under a tree when he saw lightning strike across the park.

People “didn’t move,” he said.

The strike was part of a severe thunderstorm that hit the US capital on Thursday night.

According to the US Weather Service, lightning strikes have killed an average of 27 people each year in the US over the past decade.

Only about 10% of people struck by lightning die, usually from cardiac arrest, but many are left with permanent disabilities, including neurological damage.

first published as Three killed in lightning strike near White House

Three killed in lightning strike near White House

Source link Three killed in lightning strike near White House

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