With regard to Jim Gibbons's column (CP, 16-04-21)), he says it is a mystery why there have been fewer (UK) flu-related deaths than normal during the Covid-19 related pandemic.

I am no expert but even I can understand that the transmission of the flu virus relies on exactly the same transmission methods as the Covid virus.

So, it seems perfectly reasonable to me to suppose that the precautions introduced for Covid, such as the combination of reducing inter-person contact along with much higher personal hygiene and the routine disinfecting surfaces that we come into contact with, would have significantly reduced the ability of the flu virus to be transmitted between people.

Covid-19 seems to be far more contagious than flu so one would expect the observed reduction in flu infections, compared with Covid, particularly if flu vaccination levels remained high.

I strongly suspect that instances of the common cold will also have reduced significantly during this period. I have certainly not caught one for over a year now.