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Coronavirus forces Madrid to turn ice rink into morgue

Published : 03 Apr 2020, 23:32

  DF-Xinhua Report

A health worker is seen at the IFEMA Exhibition center in Madrid, Spain, March 23, 2020. File Photo EFE/Handout via Xinhua.

The regional government of the Autonomous Community of Madrid is set to open a third temporary mortuary to help cope with the number of deaths resulting from the coronavirus, local media reported on Friday.

In the nearby commuter town of Majadahonda, it will use the "La Nevera" ice rink to store the bodies of victims until they can be buried, reports said.

The Madrid region began using the "Palacio de Hielo" ice rink in the capital as a temporary mortuary on March 24, and three days later it confirmed that it would also be using a building in Madrid's "City of Justice" complex as a second morgue.

"We are in an extraordinary situation of giant dimensions and the priority is to help the work of hospitals and funeral services and to help lessen the pain of the families," the mayor of Mahadajonda told the El Pais newspaper.

The Madrid region has been hit harder than any other part of Spain by COVID-19. According to the Spanish Ministry of Health, the autonomous community has reported 34,188 confirmed coronavirus cases (from a national total of 117,710) and 4,483 deaths, 41 percent of the total 10,935 deaths in the country.