Mobile Morgue at Coroner’s Office for COVID Crisis

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Governor J.B. Pritzker announced on April 14 that the COVID-19 doubling rate in Illinois has begun to slow down.

Preparations Made

Luckily, local morgues and funeral homes haven’t been overwhelmed, but the DuPage County Coroner’s Office was prepared if they had been.

“I was very concerned about the lack of knowledge about how long the virus lived on deceased persons or on hard surfaces, so we actually a number of weeks ago, started preparation for a mobile refrigerated morgue unit. And we obtained that and have that on our property at this point,” said DuPage County Coroner Dr. Richard Jorgensen.

Mobile Morgue Unit

The mobile unit arrived on April 4 with space for about 50 bodies. The idea was that the mobile unit would be used for those who died from the virus, or the bodies of those who could carry the virus and be infectious.

“Our people still go out into the field and investigate deaths,” Dr. Jorgensen said. “For example we had a person who died of a potential drug overdose who had been with a person who was suspected of being COVID-positive. So we treated that person as if they were positive.”

Keep it Up

Dr. Jorgensen said he’s proud of what officials have done at every level of government and how people have adapted. But it’s important for people to keep doing what they’re doing.

“The people have just for the most part done what we have to do to get over this,” he said. “They’ve hunkered down and they’ve done the right thing and I’m just proud of all the citizens and all the agencies that are working to try to get us through this.”

Naperville News 17’s Casey Krajewski reports.


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