Why Every Funeral Home and Crematory Need a Cooler! – American Mortuary Coolers Powered by Funeral Source One Supply Company

Why Every Funeral Home and Crematory Need a Cooler!

Posted by T.R. Ward on

It is the Law in some Places, but it is Part of the Obligation Everywhere!

When someone dies one of the hardest things for those left behind to deal with is that physical absence, especially immediately after the funeral home takes the deceased into their care. There is almost a blind trust that the family must give to the funeral home and it is a serious obligation of the funeral professional to maintain that trust. Even as the reputation of the funeral space is tarnished by a few bad apples (just like any profession) one obligation for the proper holding of the deceased is often seen as unnecessary even by the “good guys.” The family’s expectations are that their loved one will not decompose while in the care of the funeral director, whether they choose to embalm or not. Cold storage of the deceased in your care is necessary to delay the process of decomposition.

I have heard of the practice of lowering the thermostat in the room to cool it down until things can proceed. The minimum temperature to retard decomposition in a dead human is 40°F/4.4°C. If you can get the temp down to say 65° and end up embalming in the morning a few hours later, you are undoubtedly going to be fine. But, what about the times when the family cannot decide (that never happens, right?) or if the air conditioner cannot keep up (think Texas in August). We all know that things happen. It’s inevitable. We are obligated to remove that inevitable and do everything we can to make the worst thing a person can go through better. I won’t even mention the potential where you have more cases than you can handle. Situations like that do not come often, but they do come, as we have seen lately. Coolers are very affordable AND you will be so glad that you have one.

In many states having a cooler is the law. Check out this list of states that, in some way, require refrigeration by either statute or regulation.

 

Alabama

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Alaska

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Arizona

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours.

Arkansas

Embalmed or refrigerated at <45° or 48 hours if cremation.

California

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Colorado

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours.

Connecticut

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Delaware

No preservation time minimum requirements.

DC

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Florida

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Georgia

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Hawaii

Embalm or refrigerate after 30 hours.

Idaho

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Illinois

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Indiana

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Iowa

Refrigerate after 72 hours (at 38°-42°and only for 72 more hours.

Kansas

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours.

Kentucky

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Louisiana

Embalm or refrigerate at 45° min. after 30 hours.

Maine

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Maryland

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Massachusetts

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Michigan

No preservation time minimum requirements. However, Michigan does not consider refrigeration acceptable as a preservation method for infectious or communicable diseases and require embalming after 48 hours

Minnesota

Embalm or refrigerate after 72 hours and only for a maximum of 6 days.

Mississippi

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours if final disposition cannot take place within 48 hours.

Missouri

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Montana

Embalmed or refrigerated if final disposition cannot occur within 48 hours.

Nebraska

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Nevada

Cremation cases must be refrigerated after 24 hours.

New Hampshire

No preservation time minimum requirements.

New Jersey

No preservation time minimum requirements.

New Mexico

Embalm or refrigerate (below 40° after 24 hours.

New York

No preservation time minimum requirements.

North Carolina

No preservation time minimum requirements.

North Dakota

Embalming after 48 hours. Refrigeration is not accepted as a preservation method.

Ohio

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Oklahoma

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Oregon

Embalm, sealed casket, or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Pennsylvania

Embalm or refrigerate (35°-40°) after 24 hours. (A best practice not statute)

Rhode Island

Embalm or refrigerate after 48 hours. (Regulation not statute)

South Carolina

No preservation time minimum requirements.

South Dakota

Embalm or refrigerate after 24 hours. (Regulation not statute)

Tennessee

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Texas

Embalm, sealed casket, or refrigerate (35°-40°) after 24 hours.

Utah

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Vermont

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Virginia

Embalm or refrigerate after 48 hours.

Washington

No preservation time minimum requirements.

West Virginia

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Wisconsin

No preservation time minimum requirements.

Wyoming

Embalm or refrigerate after 36 hours. (Regulation not statute)

 

Because I am neither a lawyer nor a regulator, please double check this unofficial list with your local rules and regulations. But no matter if you are required to or choose to invest in a cooler for your funeral business, it is a small price to pay to help you meet the obligations and expectations of your families in caring for their dead.


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