Two dead and two injured after lightning strike in DC park near White House

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Two people died after being hospitalized for injuries caused by a lightning strike in a park near the White House, the Metropolitan Police Department said Friday.

The last: Two other people injured in the Lafayette Square strike were in critical condition in local hospitals Friday morning, DC police said.

  • The dead were 76-year-old James Mueller and 75-year-old Donna Mueller, of Janesville, Wisconsin.

The big picture: Two men and two women were hospitalized Thursday night with “serious life-threatening injuries” after the incident in the park, according to the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department (DC fire and EMS).

  • Officers witnessed the lightning strike and immediately began providing assistance to the four victims, a fire service spokesman said.
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The National Weather Service issued a severe thunderstorm warning for the area Thursday evening.

  • There was a “6-stroke flash near the White House that hit the same point on the ground” at 6:49 p.m., analyst Chris Vagasky told the Washington Post.
  • That means six individual current spikes hit the same point on the ground within half a second, he said.
  • Lafayette Square is adjacent to the White House, the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, and the US Treasury to the north.
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our thought bubble, via Andrew Freedman of TSWT: Severe thunderstorms with damaging winds and abundant cloud-to-ground lightning swept across the DC area during the evening rush hour, with National Weather Service warnings.

  • Lightning strikes kill an average of 20 people a year in the US and injure many more. During the storm that injured this group, wind gusts of up to 58 mph were recorded at nearby Reagan National Airport, as well as reports of downed trees and power lines.
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Editor’s Note: This article has been updated throughout with new details.

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