Crematorium Technician here

(687 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:11:53

I see lots of threads about cremations and Crematoria. I'm currently a crem tech so please ask me questions and I will endeavor to answer them.

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madmomma Thu 31-May-18 13:13:16

What made you go into this line of work? Do you enjoy it?

Marmaladdin Thu 31-May-18 13:15:28

Do people get the right ashes back? My DF (with no insight or experience) thinks we just get any old dust back....

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:15:40

I absolutely adore my job. It's a really taboo subject but I love helping people at their most vulnerable time.

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StormcloakNord Thu 31-May-18 13:16:12

This sounds like really interesting work.

I know this isn't your specific line of work - but do you know how to get into working in morgues? I've always wanted to work in a morgue but find it next to impossible to find what kind of qualifications you need?!

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:17:45

@Marmaladdin absolutely 100% of the correct ashes. An ID card is attached to the remains and stays with them until the ashes leave our crem.

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MothertotheLordsofmisrule Thu 31-May-18 13:17:47

When you first held a persons ashes what did you think/feel?

I was quite amazed by the weight of ashes I’ve held.
Sort of morbid realisation (and fascination) that these ashes were once a person.

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:18:42

@StormcloakNord I have no idea but maybe contact your local authority mortuary and they could point you in the right direction.

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Tentomidnight Thu 31-May-18 13:19:20

Are the bodies cremated after each funeral, or all at a certain time of day?
Does black smoke come out of the chimney?
What is left behind and how is it disposed of? (metal plates/pins from operations? Pacemakers? Piercings?

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:19:42

@MothertotheLordsofmisrule I refer to ashes as their name but I don't have any emotion as I didn't know the person.

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ItsAllGoingToBeFine Thu 31-May-18 13:20:21

Is metalwork offered to the family, or do you just retain it?

Marmaladdin Thu 31-May-18 13:20:23

Thanks Kermit good to know!

CherryBlossom23 Thu 31-May-18 13:21:02

Do you ever get sad being surrounded by death all the time or does it make you want to live life more while you can?

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:23:00

@Tentomidnight we cremate the same day of the service but not directly after. Black smoke does occasionally come out of the chimney if there is something that shouldn't be in there but is quickly dealt with.

Pins/plates/nails are removed before ashes are cremulated (bones broken down into ashes) then sent for recycling although you can request that the metal from cremation is returned to you.

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CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:24:27

@CherryBlossom23 I get sad at babies/small children/people my own age but keep it to myself.

It makes me embrace life and live it to the full. I find I don't sweat the small stuff as there is someone worse off than me.

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Member Thu 31-May-18 13:25:51

When the coffin goes through the curtains, does it go straight into the furnace or does it have to be lifted to the furnace i.e is the furnace directly behind where the mourners last see the coffin?

Is the furnace constantly on during the day or can it just be fired up for a single cremation?

How many coffins can fit in at a time?

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:26:02

Nothing is left in the cremator, it is all removed during the rake out process.

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TSSDNCOP Thu 31-May-18 13:26:56

Thank you OP. So is the oven swept/cleaned completely after each use? After the cremation are the remains literally dust or are there bones?

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:29:16

@Member the coffin is removed from the catafalque and is sometimes put straight into cremator if ready. Most of the time a coffin is put on racking ready to be charged. Only one coffin is placed in the cremator at any time.

We adhere to very strict rules on policy and procedure for the cremation process.

I have heard in the past that people could see flames as the curtains close. I can assure you that if you ever see this then something has gone very wrong and the Crematorium is on fire!

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Thisnamechanger Thu 31-May-18 13:30:09

Watching with interest! Thanks for sharing OP.

CodLiverOil556 Thu 31-May-18 13:30:25

@TSSDNCOP yes, the cremator (I will never refer to it as an oven) is swept down and all is left is calcified bones which are very brittle.

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Pebbles789 Thu 31-May-18 13:32:38

What happens to the coffin? Is the person taken out of it before cremation or does the coffin go into the furnace too?

PerkingFaintly Thu 31-May-18 13:32:41

Recently saw this article about metalwork after cremation.

After cremation: Recycling surgical implants
Photography student Harry Lloyd-Evans photographs surgical implants that are recovered and recycled after cremation.

Member Thu 31-May-18 13:32:53

Thanks, what’s a catafalque?

elQuintoConyo Thu 31-May-18 13:33:29

Just placemarking, terribly bad form, sorry. But this thread is fascinating.

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