Hundreds of bodies from New York virus surge still stored in freezer trucks

Hundreds of bodies remain in storage in freezer trucks in New York months after their deaths during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic in the spring, The Wall Street Journal reported.

a man riding on the back of a truck: Hundreds of bodies from New York virus surge still stored in freezer trucks

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Hundreds of bodies from New York virus surge still stored in freezer trucks

City officials told the Journal that there are about 650 bodies in storage on the 39th Street Pier in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner said the bodies are largely those of people who could not afford a burial or whose next of kin could not be located.

Such bodies would ordinarily have been buried on Hart Island, according to the newspaper, but Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) pledged in April that those burials would not occur during the coronavirus pandemic.

Some 230 victims’ relatives have not yet been located, the chief medical examiners’ office said. Officials said relatives have not had the money to collect the bodies in other cases.

The city nearly doubled the burial subsidy it offers in May, the Journal noted, but the $1,700 offered is still far short of the $9,000 average cost for a traditional burial or the $6,500 cost of a service and cremation.

Dina Maniotis, the chief medical examiner’s office’s executive deputy commissioner, told the newspaper that while anyone has the right to request a free burial on Hart Island, numerous family members are not clear on their options.

“This has been traumatic,” she said. “We are working with them as gently as we can and coaxing them along to make their plans. Many of them will decide they want to go to Hart Island, which is fine.”

Aden Naka, the office’s deputy director of forensic investigations, added that the unit is only equipped to handle about 20 deaths per day, about one-tenth of those it was faced with at the height of the pandemic in the city.

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Power out due to Hurricane Zeta? Here’s how long the food in your fridge, freezer will last | Hurricane Center

If you’re living in the New Orleans metro area, you likely don’t have power right now. 

Aside from wondering when the lights will come back on, your next thought might be figuring out what to do the food in your refrigerator or freezer. 

About 470,000 people without power in Louisiana after Hurricane Zeta

Most of the outages are in the New Orleans metro area.

If the power is still out at your home, do not open your freezer or refrigerator if possible.

Fridges will typically keep food cold for about four hours if not opened, according to the Food and Drug Administration. A full freezer should maintain a safe temperature for about 48 hours if the door stays closed as well. If your freezer is half-full, it should maintain its temp for about 24 hours. 

In the meantime, it’s a good idea to fill up an ice chest with ice and add perishable foods to enjoy until power is restored. 

Once the power is back, though, it’s time to start clearing out what might be spoiled. If your refrigerator reads 40 degrees or lower and the freezer reads 0 when you re-open it, your food should be safe, and frozen food that still retains ice crystals should be safe.

Hurricane Zeta may have sped its way across metro New Orleans, but what it left in its wake were downed trees, streets littered with debris an…

A general rule of thumb: Perishable food that is held at temperatures higher than 40 degrees for more than two hours may be unsafe to eat. That is because bacteria multiply quickly between 40 and 140 degrees.

Even foods that are deemed safe to eat should be thoroughly heated and cooked to minimum safe temperatures.

And, as always, when in doubt throw it out.

For more tips on preparing for a hurricane or power outage, head here.

Preparing for a hurricane: What to buy, what to eat, what to throw out in your kitchen

Now is the time to check your hurricane prep supplies. Along with generators, battery-powered radios or TVs, flashlights, electric candles (so…

Ann Maloney contributed to this report. 


When will power come back on in New Orleans? Entergy hopes to get it fixed 'through the weekend'

About 400,000 Entergy customers were without power as of 7 a.m. 

90% to have electricity restored within 10 days, Entergy says

Jefferson Parish asks residents to stay home, limit warm water usage after Hurricane Zeta: report

Traffic lights are out throughout the parish.

Why did Hurricane Zeta intensify so quickly? Lack of wind shear, forecaster says

Forecasters underestimated storm’s strength but nailed its track

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Newborn Baby Found Alive In Morgue Freezer After Being Declared Dead


  • The baby was born prematurely at the General Hospital La Margarita in Mexico
  • Doctors declared him dead and the body of the child was kept in the morgue freezer
  • After almost six hours, the child was found crying and moving inside the freezer

A newborn baby was found alive in a morgue refrigerator after hospital staff declared the child dead following his birth. The baby spent nearly six hours in the freezer before funeral home employees rescued him, local media reports said. 

The baby was born prematurely Oct. 21 after just 23 weeks of gestation at the General Hospital La Margarita in the city of Puebla in Mexico. Doctors told the parents the child had died and his body was stored in the morgue refrigerator.

After the parents made the arrangements to retrieve the body to conduct the funeral, a staff member arrived at the morgue and noticed the child was crying and moving, according to Mexico News Daily.

“When we got to remove the body, we noticed that it began to cry and move; the social worker even got upset when we told her he was alive because she said ‘What’s wrong, don’t be liars’ and things like that, So we told the father to approach and he also saw that the baby was crying,” the owner of the funeral home reportedly said.

A video was released by local media showing the baby wrapped in a blue sheet in his father’s arms.

“Here I am; I’m your daddy… hold on, my love,” he said, while filming the child with his cell phone. 

The General Hospital La Margarita, where the baby was born, issued a statement, saying: “The protocols for the extreme premature newborn were applied, but he did not present vital signs, so death was certified. He was transferred to the mortuary area.”

“Upon delivering the body to the relative, the medical and funeral home staff realized that the baby was alive. He immediately received supportive medical care and was transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit,” the statement continued. “The institutional authorities are in constant communication with the minor’s parents to offer them care and the necessary support, as well as timely information on his health status.”

The hospital said an investigation into the case will be carried out by their facility and another by the state’s Social Security Institute ethics committee.

Puebla governor Luis Miguel Barbosa also spoke to local media, saying a criminal complaint must be filed against those responsible for erroneously declaring the child dead.

“If doctors do not have the emotional tranquility to care for such a child and cannot differentiate between whether he is alive or dead, they should ask for a vacation or quit working,” Barbosa reportedly said.

newborn This photo shows the feet of a newborn. Representational image. Photo: Getty Images/Christopher Furlong

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