Pentagon looking to provide up to 100,000 body bags for potential civilian use

Pentagon looking to provide up to 100,000 body bags for potential civilian use
© Greg Nash

The Pentagon is looking into providing an additional 100,000 military-style body bags for civilian use, as the expected death toll from the coronavirus outbreak continues to rise.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has requested 100,000 body bags, officially called human remains pouches, and the Pentagon is looking to buy more body bags, as it dips into its stockpile of 50,000, Bloomberg reports. The request went through the Defense Logistics Agency, which oversees the distribution of the Pentagon's body bag stockpile.

The Defense Department has already sent to two Navy hospital ships to New York and Los Angeles to help relieve pressure on hospitals inundated with coronavirus patients.

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On Tuesday, the White House coronavirus task force warned the country that as many as 240,000 Americans could die from COVID-19, even with the country continuing to enforce social distancing until the end of April.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpDemocrat calls on White House to withdraw ambassador to Belarus nominee TikTok collected data from mobile devices to track Android users: report Peterson wins Minnesota House primary in crucial swing district MORE also advised Americans to prepare for a "painful two weeks.” As of Wednesday afternoon, more than 209,000 Americans have tested positive for COVID-19 and more than 4,600 have died of the disease, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The Hill has reached out to the Defense Logistics Agency for comment.