DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Montgomery County Coroner’s Office has received new technology that will make autopsies easier and more comprehensive.
County Coroner Kent Harshbarger said staff welcomed the installation of a new LODOX machine, which will offer more thorough examinations to families across the Miami Valley.
“What we had [before] is an old and typical X-ray unit, where some would have a plate, and we’d have to position the body and then go develop [the images]. So this is all digital and will do the [entire] body in about 13 seconds.”
With the rapid speed of the new technology, Harshbarger said exams will offer more insight into the condition and cause of death for each person, including internal and external bodily traumas. The machine will also reduce physical strain for technicians and will create more overall efficiency for staff in the coroner’s office.
“What used to take us two or three hours total in a day X-raying, [we’ve] done maybe in an hour or less with this piece of equipment.” said Harshbarger. “So we can now do more with less.”
The coroner’s office said the LODOX cost $445,000 and was funded with money received from area counties in return for services provided. Harshbarger said creating the appropriate space and foundation for the machine was also costly, requiring Montgomery County to make nearly $200,000 in renovations to support its weight. Montgomery County Commission President Judy Dodge, said it was a needed investment.
“The Montgomery County Commissioners, Debbie Lieberman and Carolyn Rice were happy to fund this project because we know the importance of what the coroner crime lab staff does in our community,” she said.
The coroner also received a CT scanner which came in at nearly $225,000.
Harshbarger said after having to wait a few years to complete this project, “Families are going to get a more accurate, more detailed assessment of their loved one.”