Livinston Parish Coroner's Office  
Ron Coe, M.D., Coroner

PO Box 1507, 20355 Government Blvd. Suite C, Livingston, LA 70754
Phone: 225.686.3980 • Fax: 225.686.3979
Mass Fatality Plan page 2

There are three major operational areas in a mass casualty incident response:

  1. Search and Recovery

    Locating and removing bodies, body parts, and personal effects. This initial phase of the mass fatality plan should start only after search and rescue has ended and all survivors of the incident have been accounted for. Every mass fatality site shall be treated as a crime scene until the coroner and local law enforcement agencies state differently. During Search and Recovery, search teams will systematically search and mark where bodies, body parts, and personal effects are located with pin flags and document findings.

    A team member will assign a number to that particular finding. Each finding will be photographed and logged. Pin flags shall be color coordinated for bodies, body parts and personal effects. Each pin flag will be assigned a number and each pin flag will remain in place after recovery made.

    The mass fatality area will be divided with boundary tape into grids of equal sized areas which will organize the scene into manageable units. Fluorescent paint will be used to paint letters to the left side and numbers to the bottom of the grid panel.

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    Identification Procedures:
    Photographs and videotapes will be obtained of mass fatality scene before and after grid outline and number assignment. Each body, body part and personal effect found in a particular grid will be given a number 1 through 1000 along with an identifying grid letter and number. Tag Bodies HB# and document grid number found in.
    Tag Body Parts BP# and document grid number found in.
    Tag Personal Effects PE# and document grid number found in.
    Example of bodies, body parts and personal effects found in grid C4:
    HB1 C4, HB2 C4, HB3 C4
    BP1 C4, BP2 C4, BP3 C4, BP4 C4
    PE1 C4, PE2 C4

    Bodies and body parts must be treated with dignity and respect. Each finding will be tagged with the number assigned by the search team. Bodies and body parts will be placed into a body bag or acceptable substitute A tag with the same identifying number as the contents contained within the bag will be placed on the outside of the bag. Personal effects found on the body should not be removed from the body. Personal effects not found on body shall be numbered and placed in appropriate sized plastic bags. If transporting to staging area, transport all bodies, body parts and personal effects together and place together at staging area.

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