Le Matin – Container for the dead from Kovid

First cold. Smells again, uncertain but irritating. Seventeen bodies are lying in this refrigerated container set up in the courtyard of the Johannesburg mortuary, which is always an additional place for many people to store Kovid-19 deaths. On each white plastic bag tied around the body, atomic yellow stickers: “Highly contagious”. Maintained at an internal temperature of 0 ° C, each box can hold forty corpses. “We’re getting 40% more bodies”, explains an official at Avobe, one of the largest funeral companies in the country, since Kovid. To deal with the influx and to keep Kovid apart from the others, 22 metal boxes twelve meters long, commonly used to transport goods, were distributed among the funeral company’s 250 morgues. Refrigerators here are almost full: 200 bodies are waiting to be buried or cremated that day. More than half are victims of the virus. At the other end of the series, casket makers have also been under pressure from record deaths for several months. Every day about 300 coffins exit, factories turbine at full speed. Unable to stock for weeks. In one corner, very small stem boards. They have this feature in the shape of diamonds. “These are children’s coffins”. A coffin can be made in twenty minutes. But what is lacking is not time, it is the raw material. Since the second wave began, the company has faced a shortage of wood. “And some are trying to take advantage of periods, for example things more expensive, handles.” Coffins are sold here for 30 to 350 euros. In South Africa, especially in black communities, the factory manager explains, the money invested in the coffin is commendable with the tribute paid to the deceased. But nowadays, “undertakers are no longer careful about quality, until they can find something to bury the dead of Kovid”.

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About the Author: Hanley Mallin

Internet geek. Wannabe bacon enthusiast. Web trailblazer. Music maven. Entrepreneur. Pop culture fan.

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