LAUREL, MD. (WJZ) — An ice rink in Laurel is serving as a temporary mortuary affairs center during the coronavirus pandemic, the Maryland Department of Health confirmed Tuesday.

The rink is being used for COVID-19 victims while they await transport to a funeral home or mortuary facility elsewhere.

The department said the facility is operational and “provides a high-level of dignity and respect,” for the deceased as they wait to be transported.

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At a press conference in Baltimore on Tuesday, the city said they are hoping they don’t have to come to that.

“We’ve been in some discussions that we have identified some locations that if we get to that point, we will be able to set something up along those lines, so yes it is something that we’ve been considering, it is in our plans,” the Baltimore Office of Emergency Management David McMillian.

He added as far as he knows, it doesn’t look to be a part of their plan, but they are preparing for anything that comes down the line.

The city also reminded residents to continue practicing social distancing, and as the weather gets warmer to please not throw parties or large gatherings.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

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