“COVID, Flu, and Auto Deaths – How Do They Compare?”

By Donna Garner

A car that has been hit by another car.


I have been struggling to find the best way to report and compare the various statistics on COVID, Flu, and Auto deaths in the United States.

Some agencies report health statistics per 1 million people while other organizations use deaths per 100,000 people.

I believe the easiest way to understand the death rates is “deaths per 1 million population.” 

Here are those results.  (To verify my calculations, please read further on down the page.)


COVID-19 Deaths     =      66 COVID Deaths/1 Million population

Flu Deaths                =      127 Flu Deaths/1 Million population

Auto Deaths             =      112 Auto Deaths/1 Million population


COVID-19 is indeed a very contagious virus, but very few people younger than 20 years of age catch it with even fewer dying from it.  

Recently we learned that 98% of people who catch COVID live; 25 % to 50% of people who contract it have no symptoms.

Here is the comparison per 1 million population:  66 COVID deaths, 127 Flu deaths, 112 Auto deaths.

The U. S. has lost about 3 ½ times more people to Flu and Auto deaths this year than we have lost to COVID-19.

Unquestionably, COVID-19 is a serious illness. The loss of any life is very precious and valuable.

However, we need to keep all of these figures in perspective.

QUESTON:  Did we shut down the United States (and crush the best economy in the world) over the Flu?  Did we shut down the country (and crush the best economy in the world) over Auto deaths?

ANSWER:  It is time to get our country back to work, and we must pray that our leaders will devise a step-by-step plan of action to make that happen.


Below are the calculations that were used to arrive at the conclusive data:

U. S. Population = 331,002,651 (2020)

U.S COVID deaths = 21,952  (As of 4.12.20) (2020)

U.S. COVID Deaths    =    21,952       =   66.3 COVID Deaths/1 Million population
U.S. Population              331,002,651 

Flu Deaths:

According to the CDC, there were 24,000 to 62,000 flu deaths during this flu season (October 1, 2019 to April 4, 2020). Use an average of 42,000 for this year.

U.S. Flu Deaths    =    42,000        =   126.9 Flu Deaths/1 Million population
U.S. Population             331,002,651 

Auto Deaths:
How does this compare with annual automobile deaths?  According to the latest figures (2018) from U.S. Department of Transportation, there were 36,560 auto deaths in the U.S. in 2018.  The USDOT figures are:

U.S. Population (2018) = 327,167,434
U.S. Auto Deaths (2018) = 36,560

U.S. Auto Deaths    =    36,560        =   111.7 Auto Deaths/1 Million population
U.S. Population             327,167,434 

Source of Data:
CDC and WorldOMeter