Refrigerated trailers serving as makeshift morgues are shown outside the El Paso County Forensic Physician’s Office in El Paso, Texas on November 16, 2020. The Texas Department of Health Services has requested five mortuary trailers, experiencing an increase in Cases of covid19. (Justin Hamel via Getty Images)
AUSTIN, Texas – The Texas Department of Health has requested five mortuary trailers, experiencing an increase in COVID-19 cases and, along with Florida, leading the nation in pediatric hospitalizations.
According to spokesman Douglas Loveday, the Texas State Department of Health Services filed an application for the trailers following a review of state data on fatalities.
The application was filed on Aug. 4 as “a normal part of preparing to have them available to support local jurisdictions in case they need them,” he said.
“The trailers are not specifically for San Antonio, but will be made there, as it is our staging location for these resources, as it is in the center and where we have space to store them,” he said. Loveday.
Loveday said the trailers were requested after a review of Texas data on fatalities and the increase in fatalities during the third wave of the state’s COVID-19 pandemic.
On Tuesday, there were 327 intensive care beds available in Texas and 11,791 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 patients in hospitals across the state, according to state health data.
The state suffered 53,100 fatalities as of Monday.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has opposed mask mandates and issued an executive order banning school districts from demanding masks, prompting reactions against local educators and leaders.
Texas had the largest pediatric hospitalizations in the country, with 239, according to the latest data released Monday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Florida had 170 children in hospitals with COVID-19.