South Africa Faces Shortage Of Coffins As COVID-19 Death Toll Increases With Second Wave

South Africa has lately been facing a shortage of coffins since the number of deaths surged in the country in the last few days. Have a look at how the problem is being dealt with.

Sania Kader

January 16, 2021

Trending News

3 min


The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic recently hit South Africa and the result has been a sudden surge in positive cases. The country has also been witnessing an increase in the number of deaths which in-turn affected the demand for coffins. The country was also shut for the holidays which has resulted in a shortage of coffins. According to the sales manager at Enzo Wood Designs in Johannesburg, the demand will continue to increase but they have no plans of overworking the staff to meet the demands. Various measures are also being taken to curb the shortage, as per the byte given by deputy president of NFDA. He stated that stocks are being transfers to the heavily affected areas while companies have been alerted about the numbers.

Here is a look at the ZEE5 video with details related to the coffin demand in South Africa:

The cumulative COVID-19 positive cases in South Africa currently stands at 1.3 million while the death toll has risen to 35140. Since the death tolls have been heavily increasing, coffin manufacturing companies have been finding it difficult to meet the demands.

Kasie Pillay, sales manager for Enzo Wood Designs said, “The deaths have increased and we need to push out work as much as we can, just to meet the demand. With the second wave, it started to get busy again and increased prices on raw materials and there is a shortage of timber. One of our suppliers, some of their staff picked up COVID, they had to close down. It is sometimes very difficult to cope. You can only make so many units per day.” Kasie Pillay also made it clear that they would stick to the working hours as they cannot burn out their employees.

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National Funeral Directors Association deputy president, Dr Lawrence Konyana, also addressed the issue and shed some light on the measures that are being taken. “Due to a rising number of deaths in particularly eastern cape, a few of the directors did indicate that they are running out of coffins. This was mostly due to the effect that most of the manufacturers were still on their December break. However, most of them did come back to start production immediately, and further introduced the double-shift system to make sure that the coffins are stocked as soon as possible.”

He also added that some of the stock was mobilized from different provinces which were less affected to the ones that were heavily affected.

Also read Two South Africa men players test positive for Covid-19

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