A local crematory catches fire as a result of the heavy usage needed to cremate corona victims.
At Cognetta’s Funeral Home in Stamford, Connecticut a crematory chamber caught fire due to the overheating of one of it’s two incinerators. The funeral home director blames the current health crisis for the situation.
According to Chief Fire Marshal Water Seely the door to the fire chamber malfunctioned during a cremation, causing smoke and heat to enter the building. One of the employees tried to close the door with the manual control panel but the door did not respond.
Nicholas Cognetta, the funeral home owner said that the malfunction was a result of the current health crisis. To keep up with the demand the crematory has been running full time for weeks and there is even a waiting list for bodies to be cremated for over a week.
Nicholas mentioned that the extra hours that the machines are running have taken their toll on the machines causing them to overheat and melting wires, which caused the door of the incinerator to open too early.
The fire department was able to get the fire under control with a team of 22 firefighters, keeping the damages to a minimal level. The incinerator was checked and fixed by an electrician and the crematory was back up and running within a day.
This incident is a reminder for death care professionals to be extra mindful when taking up extra work to help the community in these trying times. Health and safety of funeral workers and the community should always be prioritized. With high volumes of cremations it’s important to make sure that the machinery works well and is properly taken care of to prevent incidents from happening.