THE city is running low on space to bury casualties of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
City Environment and Parks Management Officer Rhenan Diwas revealed that the city cemetery is facing a shortage of available tombs for burying dead residents in Baguio.
Diwas said that the city has only 12 available tombs remaining, which are easily used up, especially as the city is bracing for the potential surges brought about by the COVID-19 Delta variant, which has been seen in the city.
With the potential need for more burial space looming, Diwas has proposed potential solutions to the shortage, such as continuing the city’s practice of reclaiming vacant lots and tombs, and limiting burials to those who cannot afford cremation, while encouraging more well-to-do residents to avail of cremations.
Diwas also proposed a longer-term set of potential solutions including the putting up of a city crematorium for those who cannot afford private cremations to lessen the strain on the city cemetery, as well as the put-up of a bone crypt to house remains for up to five years and then give way to new burials.
City officials are currently reviewing the city’s sustainable public cemetery master plan.
Meanwhile, the city’s two existing crematoriums can currently handle six cremations per day, but Baguio Mayor Benjamin Magalong said that the city is expediting the application of another private company that would bump up the city’s capacity to 18 cremations a day.