Refrigerated trailers to be used as makeshift morgues hummed outside two hospitals on as New York City deals with the surging death count in the epicentre of the nation’s coronavirus pandemic.
The last time New York took such drastic measures was after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, when the city medical examiner’s office was tasked with identifying tens of thousands of body parts from the 2,753 people killed in the World Trade Center collapse.
The makeshift morgues signal the historic challenge posed by the national health crisis.
New York state, where 385 people have died from the virus, has more than 37,000 of the nation’s more than 80,000 coronavirus cases.
“We have a pretty large capacity compared to hospitals,” said Davis, adding that the trucks plus the mobile tents increase the morgue capacity to 3,500 to 3,600 bodies.
Workers moved around medical supplies and construction equipment in preparation for a potential surge in coronavirus victims.
Military personnel and members of the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner wore masks as the morgue facilities were built outside the hospital.
Medical Examiner trucks were spotted outside the hospital on Wednesday as the makeshift morgue facilities were constructed.