Tue, Dec 20, 2011 - Page 14 News List

No incinerators for the overweight at crematoriums
太胖進不了火化爐 家屬轟難道要剖半

A nurse measures a child during a weight loss program at a hospital in Beijing on Oct. 11.

Photo: AFP
照片: 法新社

A Taichung man surnamed Wang who died after an automobile accident last week could not be cremated because crematoriums do not have incinerators large enough for a man his size. He weighed more than 110kg and the intravenous drip administered to him when he was rescued caused his body to swell. His relatives and friends were extremely critical about being left with no other option but to bury the body, asking whether fat people were supposed to have their bodies chopped in half to get cremated?

When the family visited various crematoriums in Greater Taichung’s Dajia District and other areas in Taichung to make inquiries, they discovered the average crematorium incinerator was only 65 to 75cm wide, so they had no other choice but to have him interred since there was no way the body could fit inside an incinerator.

The family of the deceased complained they would have to bury him, perform a traditional rite known as jiangu, or picking up the bones, and that everything would cost around NT$200,000 more than having him cremated. It is unreasonable that the government encourages people to cremate the dead, yet crematoriums are unable to meet public demand as the corpulent population continues to expand.

When local residents told Greater Taichung Councilor Yu Pi-ling about the situation, she said she will make a proposal suggesting that the city government build bigger incinerators so that overweight people will not have to worry about not being taken care of when they die.

Greater Taichung’s Mortuary Services Office Director Lai Jung-yu said that there are 12 incinerators in Taichung, four in Dajia District, and that all of them adhere to the same 190cm-long, 65cm-wide, 50cm-tall specifications.








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