Eruption’s sad aftermath
FORENSIC experts yesterday worked on the grim task of identifying dozens of bodies charred beyond recognition by the eruption of Guatemala’s Volcano of Fire, a disaster that has left at least 110 dead and nearly 200 still missing.
Even as search and recovery efforts were suspended for a second day amid dangerous volcanic flows, about 15 forensic experts worked at a makeshift morgue in a warehouse in the southern city of Escuintla. The corpses arrive wrapped in sheets and plastic, blackened and often missing extremities, filling the cavernous, metalroofed warehouse with the unmistakeable stench of death.
Experts check for anything to identify bodies, such as clothing, and take genetic material from bones to compare with blood drawn from people with missing relatives.