Environmental regulations in Los Angeles County have been lifted for crematoria as they face an increasing volume of bodies of people who died from the coronavirus, NPR reports.
At the request of the county’s medical examiner-coroner and public health department, the South Coast Air Quality Management District has lifted some restrictions on put in place to guarantee air quality in the Los Angeles valley.
“The current rate of death is more than double that of pre-pandemic years, leading to hospitals, funeral homes, and crematoriums exceeding capacity without the ability to process the backlog of cases,” officials said.
More than 2,700 bodies are being stored at hospitals and the coroner’s office, along with those awaiting cremation. The crematoria have more capability that the air quality regulations allow, therefore an increase in the output of the crematoria could ease the storage burden.