The harrowing shot was sent to Buzzfeed News by a Manhattan nurse.
The harrowing shot was sent to Buzzfeed News by a Manhattan nurse.

Footage of bodies loaded onto trucks

Refrigerated trucks being filled with the bodies of Americans who have died from COVID-19 are the latest disturbing scenes of the coronavirus pandemic currently crippling the world.

A nurse at a hospital in New York City, currently the epicentre of the outbreak in the United States, shared the photo with Buzzfeed News on Sunday morning after coming across the truck parked in an ambulance bay.

"I took it to show to people," the nurse told Buzzfeed. "It is the ghastly reality of what we deal with and where some of us have ended up already."

The harrowing shot was sent to Buzzfeed News by a Manhattan nurse.
The harrowing shot was sent to Buzzfeed News by a Manhattan nurse.

According to text messages he sent to Buzzfeed one of the bodies in the truck was a 71-year-old woman who he had watched take her last breath the night before. She'd tested positive a week earlier and was sent home, returning to the hospital with shortness of breath. She asked not to be intubated and died.

The image was shortly followed by disturbing footage from a different New York City borough showing a forklift loading what appear to be body bags into the back of a truck.

"This is live from Brooklyn, New York," the cameraman said over the footage. "They're putting bodies in the back of a freezer truck."

A separate piece of footage shows a worker in personal protective equipment, now a scant resource in New York hospitals being rationed by the healthcare staff on the frontline of the pandemic, opening the back of a truck.

"Bodies, bodies, bodies," he said as the camera pans across a number of sheet-covered stretchers on the footpath. "They have a truck that we're going to put the f***ing bodies in, bro," he said before opening the rear of the vehicle.

"Bodies up there," he said as he turned the camera into the largely empty container. "No piling up," he added.

New York State recorded its first coronavirus case on March 1.

Less than a month later the amount of confirmed cases in the state is approaching 66,500, and more than 1200 people have died.

A 1000 bed navy hospital ship has docked in New York to try and alleviate pressure on the health system.

While New York is the epicentre of COVID-19 in the US, in no small part due to its high population density, other urban centres around the US are seeing cases begin to increase significantly as well.

New Orleans is expected to become another epicentre after people flocked to the southern city from around the country and the world to mingle on top of one another at the annual Mardi Gras celebration towards the end of February.

 

Originally published as Footage of bodies loaded onto trucks