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Real-World Comparisons
Author: TriSec    Date: 05/19/2020 13:27:32


In all honesty, a blog I should have written weeks ago.

Taking off above us, is the largest commercial airliner in the world, the monstrous (and ugly) Airbus A-380.

Unless you live near a major international hub, you've never seen one. No domestic airline owns one, and the bulk of them are used on very long-haul international routes between world financial hubs.

While it is certified for a whopping 853 passengers, most of the fleet is arranged to carry 525 persons.

So let's think about Coronavirus.

Here in this Commonwealth, this morning's figure is 5,862 deaths. It would be as if TEN A-380s had crashed with no survivors since March 23 (when our numbers took off.)

That was just 8 weeks ago. If we had a major airline crash each and every week in 'normal times', how quickly do you think the entire aviation industry would shut down?

But let's scale that up nationally - The Washington Post reports this morning that at least 89,000 people have died from coronavirus thus far. We'll actually revert our airliner downwards, to something more people are familiar with.


This is the refined and elegant Boeing 747-800, currently the largest passenger aircraft made in the USA. She can carry 467 passengers in the typical three-class configuration we're mostly familiar with. (First, Business, Cattle).

With 90,000 dead, that's the same as 192 of these plummeting out of the sky and killing everyone on-board. Back to our dates; March 23 to today is just 57 days. Are we ready to deal with the repercussions of 3 wide-body jets 'piling it in' EVERY DAY for two months?

If you need a comparison for such carnage - look up the Tenerife disaster of 1977. TWO fully-loaded Boeing 747 managed to hit each other, while on the ground readying for takeoff. It remains the highest casualty count of any airplane crash to this day - 583 people were killed. But even that is a mere 10% of the Massachusetts deaths so far, to say nothing of your state.

But back to our visuals.

May 16 is the last day data is available, and "just" 39 persons died of Coronavirus here in Massachusetts. That's the lowest one-day total since April 4, if the numbers are to be believed.

But that's still the same as if one of these crashed at Hanscom on that date, and everybody died:


Finally - you'll be seeing this blog lurking around a bit. I intend on updating it as we go along.

5 comments (Latest Comment: 07/21/2020 21:41:48 by TriSec)
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Comment by BobR on 05/19/2020 14:29:19
To add another angle to this analogy - with plane flight, you actually have a choice as to whether you get on the plane or not.

Comment by TriSec on 05/21/2020 16:21:22
Here is a Boeing 737-300.


It's the same aircraft type that was involved in the Aliquippa incident in 1994, where 130 people were killed.

128 people died of Coronavirus in this Commonwealth yesterday.

Comment by TriSec on 05/25/2020 13:36:54
Here is an Embraer E-170.

This has a capacity of 66 persons, the same number of deaths reported yesterday in this Commonwealth. Another one in the harbor with no survivors. Think about it.


Comment by TriSec on 07/01/2020 13:11:09
I have not updated this in over a month. Seeing that all the numbers nationally are trending in the wrong direction, we'll take a look again.

The national average for the month of June went from 921 deaths per day on June 10 to 1,270 per day on June 30. We've got to go back to the big jets again.

The Boeing 777 has a capacity of around 400 pax. So, three of these piling it in each and every day this month.


Comment by TriSec on 07/21/2020 21:41:48
Updating again. A friend of mine in Florida referenced a news story he heard -

I was listening to the news this week and one of the anchors said that we needed to put the 137,000 people dead in four months into a context people can understand.
He said to imagine those 137,000 dead people were airline passengers.
Losing 137,000 people in four months would be equivalent to 50 planes a week crashing, for four months, with all on board dying.
50 PLANE CRASHES A WEEK. For four months. All on board, DEAD.

I just looked it up, and the CDC reported 437 deaths for yesterday nationally. That's back to the 747 again.


And remember, another one crashes tomorrow.