An ice rink in Laurel, near Washington DC, has been turned into a temporary morgue amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

Vans, including some from funeral businesses could be seen coming and going at The Gardens Ice House complex on Tuesday, while police patrolled the area.

The ice rink has been under the Maryland Park Police's watch for several weeks now as funeral homes in the area have become overwhelmed with the number of corpses arriving as the pandemic continues to weigh heavily on the local community.

"I have been walking here for the last two weeks and I have noticed that there are parked police cars guarding both ends of the parking lot and they have put in spikes. They are very diligent, they won't allow anybody to step foot in the parking lot, not even the walkers," explained local resident Maria.

The Gardens Ice House is a huge complex with five rinks, including an Olympic sized rink according to its website. The location often hosts competitive college games, local tournaments as well as being a popular location for the local community. The rink was already closed amid the coronavirus social distancing measures in place.

There have been 27,117 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Maryland to date, leading to 1,390 coronavirus related deaths. Nationwide, the number of confirmed cases has soared past 1,200,000, with 72,044 people dying with the virus.

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Associated Press 11 May 2020 11:44 CEST

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