Hoax Alert: Coronavirus could kill 81,000 in U.S.

Hoax AlertArticle Headline – “Coronavirus could kill 81,000 in U.S.”

Wow!!!!   WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE ! ! !

OK, maybe not. Why? Ah…let’s talk about it…

First of all read the words in the headline, specifically “…could kill…”. That means there is only a possibility of that occurring.

Next, let’s move it into the professional world of emergency incident response…yeah, real world of those who actually respond to this stuff. Since there is a “possibility” that it could occur let’s apply a more professional and more accurate term…”probability”. Now, since we moved into the professional world let’s look at that word…a percentage of nonoccurence is always associated with it when planning for the occurrence to actually happen. And nowhere in the article do they give that % chance that their prediction will occur. Strike #1.

So let’s look at the folks who came up with that prediction…University of Washington School of Medicine. This is a subjective observation on my part…they are hardly a top tier group such as John Hopkins. Strike #2.

There actual finding states that their number could “vary widely” and could be “38,000 to as high as around 162,000“. So they really don’t know. It could range from an average flu season number of deaths to triple the number of deaths in a bad flu season. SO they question their own “predictions”. Strike #3.

The the report lead person responds to why the problem in figuring out what exactly will, “disparate rates of the spread of the virus in different regions, which experts are still struggling to explain“. Yeah, they admit they don’t understand their own prediction or the underlying numbers they are using to make the prediction. Strike #4.

And finally…these predictions come from a process called “modeling”. And modeling takes a snapshot of data of their choosing, then applies a statistical model to it, massage the expectations, and then promote the numerical outcome. In other words…they guess at it. Does modeling exist anywhere else in the scientific world? Yup! let me show you one…

Here is the model that the weather service produced to show different modeling of where the hurricane might hit. Notice the variances? Why do you think those variances exist? Because they don’t “know” they are making a scientific guess.The guesses vary from hitting eastern coast of Florida then Louisiana all the way to swooping around and completely missing the eastern coast of Florida and then hitting the northern coast of Florida.

Another view of modeling…

Notice the the northern landfall guess is 500 miles wide! That guess is about 75% of the entire coast of the northern part of the Gulf of Mexico. That is how accurate modeling is…guessing at it.

Actual track of Hurricane Katrina…

If you view the actual track vs. the modeling you find that one of the models hit it pretty well. But, it was only 1 of the modeling tracks, the other 80% weren’t even close.

Bottom line: Someone is going to be right about the COVID-19 outcomes in terms of deaths…and at least 80% of everything else, maybe more, will be proven wrong. And right now…the facts are showing this University of Washington School of Medicine model (guess) to be in the 80% wrong category. Stick with facts!


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4 thoughts on “Hoax Alert: Coronavirus could kill 81,000 in U.S.

  1. If you are modeling a hurricane in the Gulf do you use weather data from the Pacific North West? If you are trying to model an outbreak doesn’t it make sense to model the area currently getting hit the hardest? We can hope other areas don’t get hit as hard but the pattern will probably be similar. All areas being hit will experience their own curve.

    At this time the average flu numbers look much worse. However we’re still early in the cycle and still on the way up on the bell-shaped curve. The number of cases and deaths are doubling every few days.


    • Hey Barry, Great feedback! I am turning it into a “feedback & comment” post for later today. Please read and respond. I appreciate the give & take and making me think. Thank you! AH

      On 3/29/2020 8:04 AM, A.H. Trimble – Emergency preparedness information for disasters and grid-down wrote: > WordPress.com >


  2. While I appreciate your alerts, I’m not sure that this qualifies as a hoax. This model could turn out to be accurate. The deaths due to Covid-19 in the U.S. are growing exponentially. We all hope that doesn’t continue, that as the weather warms up this thing slows down, that treatments like chloroquine work, and that other successful treatments are discovered along with a vaccine.


    • It is a hoax…in my opinion. They took a snap-shot sample of data in the MOST infected area of the country, during a time when it was growing the most rapidly for their model. There are several articles out there that have already discredited their report. But yes, there is always the chance that their model will be correct…but it is a mighty slim chance.

      So, that being said…can we agree it is a very probable hoax?

      And as a side note…..How many people in the US died from the flu in the 2017/2018 flu season?
      Answer: 80,000 according to the CDC.

      Kinda interesting perspective.


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