Vigo County health officials making emergency preparations as COVID-19 cases, death toll rise

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VIGO Co., Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Vigo County Health Officials said Friday that the county is on track to break another weekly record of positive COVID-19 cases.

As of November 13, there have been 751 newly reported cases. The final count of the week will happen Saturday.

Last week, the county’s total was just under 600.

Health officials said there has also been an increase in deaths. In October there were 21 COVID-19 related deaths total. So far in November, there have been 10.

In addition, local hospitals are beginning to reach capacity due to the number of COVID-19 patients needing treatment.

On Thursday, Vigo County Health Department Administrator Joni Wise and County Commissioner Brendan Kearns shared video about emergency plans related to the pandemic.

One of the plans includes having refrigerated trucks on standby, in the case the death toll continues to rise.

According to Health Educator Roni Elder, the plan for the trucks is only a precaution.

“We have a lot of deaths happening in Vigo County and not a lot of places to store them. Our funeral homes are getting to the point where they don’t have a place to keep all the bodies. If that would become a huge problem, we have a plan in place to have refrigerated trucks come in to hold the bodies if we could need to,” Elder said.

Funeral home directors with Greiner Funeral Home and DeBaun Funeral home said they are not experiencing a problem storing bodies at this time.

Currently, Vigo County is orange on the state’s COVID-19 map.

According to Elder, if the county moves to red tighter restrictions could be implemented.

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