Bodies Stack Up in Japan's 'Corpse Hotels'

Bodies have to wait their turn at over-worked crematoriums

By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 13, 2011 4:21 AM CDT

(Newser) – Space in Japan is so tight and facilities so crunched that there are even waiting lines for corpses. But they can cool their heels in bizarre new "corpse hotels," where families can visit them until the bodies are turned to ash in overbooked crematoriums, reports Reuters. The death rate is up in Japan, current facilities can't keep pace with the demand, and no one wants new furnaces near their homes or offices. One hotel keeper uses refrigerated units to stores bodies, which can be automatically transported to a room for viewing whenever a family member wants. It's a much better idea than keeping a dead loved one at home—where there "isn't much space," he explains.

Hanging out, waiting for a furnace: Ren? Magritte's 'Perspective.'   (?Cea.)
A crematorium employee prepares for a cremation.   (Getty Images)
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