RNA - The aerial images showed workers putting caskets into deep trenches in a one-mile, limited-access strip on New York’s Hart Island, located at the western end of Long Island Sound in the northeast Bronx, Which has over the years been used for burying mostly homeless people and families that cannot afford a funeral.
Officials said the burials have been ramping up at the site as the New York state currently has more coronavirus cases than any single country.
About 25 bodies a week are buried on the island and the burials are now happening five days a week, with around 24 burials each day, according to the US Department of Correction.
About 40 coffins were lined up for burial on the island on Thursday, and two fresh trenches had been dug in recent days.
New York, the worst-hit state by the coronavirus outbreak, registered a record-breaking increase in fatalities for a third consecutive day on Thursday.
The number of deaths in the state of New York rose by 799 to more than 7,000, after increases of 779 the day before, and 731 the day before that.
"Today we can say that we have lost many of our brothers and sisters, but we haven't lost anyone because they couldn't get the right and best health care that they could," New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said at a daily news briefing.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also expressed regret over the back-to-back record number of coronavirus deaths and said the city needed to continue social distancing as well as adding more coronavirus testing capacity before the loosening of restrictions could be considered.
US deaths due to coronavirus topped 17,820 on Friday, with more than 475,000 confirmed cases.
US officials warned Americans to expect alarming numbers of coronavirus deaths this week.
The warning comes as US healthcare workers say they are desperately grappling with shortages of medical equipment to protect themselves while working at hospitals to take care of patients suffering from the highly contagious coronavirus infection.
Top US health officials have warned that as the coronavirus, COVID-19 spreads across the country, hospitals and first responders are already facing a critical shortage of personal protective equipment needed to safely manage the pandemic.
The White House is also seeking to deflect criticism of its own sluggish response to the COVID-19 crisis by putting too much emphasis on the virus’s likely origins in China, with President Donald Trump and other US officials, including Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, referring to the coronavirus as the “Chinese virus.”