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What is a crematorium?

Upon the death of a person, the remains will often be sent to a purpose built facility called a crematorium where they will be cremated. Many crematoriums are located within the grounds of a cemetery; others are located in a separate building. There are some facilities that have but a single cremator and there are others that can handle a large volume of cremations.

Upon a person’s death, the body is transported to the crematorium where it is placed in a furnace which is burning at a very high temperature. In short order the remains are reduced to ash, there are also large fragments of bone which are usually ground up by the crematorium. There are some cases where the religion of the deceased and the family do not allow for further reduction of the bones and they are left as is. Upon the completion of the process the ashes are placed in handmade wooden urns and given to the family for disposal. In many cases the urn is left to be interred in a vault at the crematorium.

Depending on the size of the crematorium, family members may be welcomed during the cremation process. These facilities offer the family a small meditation room or chapel and in some cases it is possible to hold religious services during the cremation. Usually larger facilities that handle a high volume of cremations will not have these family facilities, the family of the deceased is asked to pick up handmade wooden urns that hold the remains after the process has been completed.

The concept of cremation was slow to catch on in the US and Europe but it is a practice that has been followed in many parts of Asia for centuries. Today cremation is one of the preferred methods of disposal of the remains of a deceased loved one. The practice of cremation is considerably less expensive than body burial and funeral service, it is also believed by many to be more environmentally sensitive.

Crematoriums, the same as funeral homes, are subject to a number of laws. The laws are set to ensure that the facility is safe and hygienic and that the operators maintain respect for the deceased and the remains. Regular inspections of the facility are carried out by the authorities to see that the operation abides by the laws and human decency.

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