50 Troops are now removing bodies from a coronavirus-hit city that can no longer cope with the numbers dying.
Italy has seen 41,035 cases and 3,405 coronavirus deaths—more deaths than in China, which has 23 times Italy’s population. Health systems in northern Italy, the European epicenter of the disease, are so overwhelmed that they cannot process the corpses of the dead, let alone tend to all the sick. The 427 deaths yesterday came after 475 people died Wednesday in Italy, the single highest death toll in any country throughout the pandemic.
The rapid increase in deaths comes despite Italy imposing a draconian lockdown.
More than 2,600 medical workers have now been infected in Italy – more than eight percent of the country’s total cases.
In Bergamo, where the number of dead is rising faster than authorities and churches can bury or cremate them, the Italian government sent a convoy of 15 army trucks to transport the corpses to other cities for disposal. Loaded with coffins, the trucks drove at night through the city’s deserted streets, filmed only by Bergamo residents confined in apartments overlooking their route.
The wealthy city – in the hard-hit Lombardy region – has recorded more than 90 virus-related deaths since the start of the outbreak.
“The crematorium of Bergamo, working at full capacity, 24 hours a day, can cremate 25 dead”, said a spokesperson for the local authority.
Previously, the municipality of Bergamo asked for help with the cremation of the dead, as the local crematorium was unable to cope with the load.
The Covid-19 outbreak has imposed various restrictions on movement and social life worldwide, with profound economic consequences. Many countries have closed their borders to foreigners, but cities are in quarantine.
On March 11, the World Health Organization announced that the spread of Covid-19 had reached the level of a global pandemic.
In total, the virus, which began last December in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has been detected in more than 100 countries, including all European countries.
There are around 250,000 infections worldwide, of which more than 80,000 are in China. In total, more than 10 000 people have died from the disease, including more than 3400 in Italy.
More than 88,000 people have recovered.