85% of new corona infections, deaths coming from Europe and US
Spain started storing bodies in an ice rink converted to a makeshift morgue Tuesday, as coronavirus deaths mounted there and around the world, with the World Health Organization warning the pandemic was still in a nascent stage with infections expected to increase “considerably.”
Some 85% of new infections came from Europe and the United States, according to the WHO, with Spain registering a record daily increase of 6,584 new infections and a leap of 500 in the death toll to 2,696.
A Japanese TV network reported that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe would propose postponing the upcoming Tokyo Olympics by a year because of the outbreak.
In Madrid, vans driven by workers in protective suits and masks brought bodies to the Palacio de Hielo — Ice Palace — mall to store at its indoor skating rink until they can be buried or cremated after other facilities became overwhelmed.
The Spanish capital last week adapted two hotels to serve as emergency hospitals to help with the overflow of COVID-19 patients. It plans to convert five more, and Madrid’s hotel association has offered a total of 40 of its buildings to be used. The city has also set up a field hospital in the Ifema trade fair complex, not far from the makeshift Ice Palace morgue.
As health care workers worked around the clock, they also struggled with scarce supplies.