Three people were killed and a fourth seriously injured after being struck by lightning in a park outside the White House on Thursday night in Washington, police sources confirmed to AFP on Friday.
The lightning struck near the small square in Lafayette, located across the street from the White House, striking an elderly couple identified as James Mueller, 76, and Donna Mueller, 75, authorities said.
Originally from Janesville, Wisconsin, they were in Washington to celebrate their 56th wedding anniversary, their niece Michelle McNett told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
A 29-year-old man was also killed, police confirmed Friday afternoon, while a fourth person is “in critical condition.”
White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said the presidency was “heartbroken by the tragic loss” and sent condolences to the families of the deceased in a statement Friday, as well as “her prayers for those fighting for their lives.” life”.
The lightning struck on Thursday minutes before 7:00 p.m. local time (11:00 p.m. GMT). Apparently the victims had sought shelter from the storm under one of the trees in the park.
Images released by the fire department show a large number of ambulances in the square, while the storm continued to hit Washington.
The probability of being struck by lightning is one in a million, according to US authorities, and according to the weather service, some 27 people died per year in the United States from this type of event in the last decade. (YO)