A temporary mortuary site is being prepared at Birmingham Airport ahead of a predicted rise in the number of coronavirus fatalities.

The facility, which will be based in a hangar, could ultimately accommodate all deaths across the West Midlands - including those not related to coronavirus.

1,500

deaths will be accommodated at the airport but will expand to hold more.

Regional morgues could close to staff the new site.

Senior Birmingham Coroner Louise Hunt said:

"We understand that it is a very difficult time for everyone and we will do all that we can to make sure bereaved families understand what is happening to their loved ones and to release them for funeral as soon as we can."

Louise Hunt

Assistant Chief Constable Vanessa Jardine from West Midlands Police chairs the group overseeing the multi-agency response:

"This is a major incident but by bringing all public sector agencies and partners together we are able to better deal with this challenge together and work jointly at a critical time of need.

Vanessa Jardine

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