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Options for funeral homes as they reach capacity

Posted at 12:39 AM, Jul 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-13 03:39:32-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — "16 to 17, that's refrigeration units as well as embalming tables."

That's the capacity at Carillo's Funeral Home, according to Director and Embalme, April Seybert.

"We're not there yet, but we wanted a contingency plan put into place."

Seybert said for the last two weeks her funeral home has come close to reaching its limit.

She said it's due to a higher death rate which can be attributed, indirectly, to the COVID-19 pandemic.

'Carillo's' continues to offer its services.

"We're still doing full traditional burials," Seybert said.

"If we're close to capacity, that means that we would have to turn families away."

Seybert said reaching capacity has happened before but she contacted other funeral homes for help, finding that they were experiencing the same issue.

"I had reached out to our State Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers, first."

The State Board forwarded her to the Pima County Medical Examiners Office, Seybert said they offered an option.

"If we get to capacity we can reach out to them all hours of the day or night and they will take in the deceased, the loved one, and just hold them there until we have the space at our facility."

Another option says said would prefer to avoid if at all possible: refrigerated trucks.

She said there is something you can do to make your process for yourself or a loved easier should the unforeseen occur.

"Pre-planning is always a good thing to do to plan ahead. Not everybody can do that, not everybody thinks about that, but we'll be here no matter what."