Unless you choose a green burial, one of the things cremation services in Prince Albert, SK, may have you pay for is a burial vault. And it is one of the most expensive funeral items one can buy. What is it? Is it necessary? Is there an alternative? We answer these questions and more below.
What is a Burial Vault?
A burial vault is a lined and sealed outer receptacle that houses a casket. In plain terms, it is a container that protects the casket from surrounding soil and elements. Originally, burial vaults were invented to prevent grave robbers from easily accessing a coffin and stealing valuables and bodies. Today, they exist purely for structural reasons: to protect the casket from the weight of the earth and heavy maintenance equipment. As a result, the ground around the casket and the cemetery stay intact.
Contrary to some beliefs, they do not stop the decomposition process. Instead, keeping dirt, water, and other natural elements away from the body slow down decomposition over time. Burial vaults come in different forms, usually made of metal or concrete. They have four sides, with a sealed top after the casket is lowered into the vault.
Is a Burial Vault Necessary?
Based on the explanation above, you probably see why a burial vault might be necessary, but only for the cemetery. Requiring a burial vault ensures that the cemetery is safe for visitors and workers who maintain the grounds.It’s also advisable to get one if you have a home burial or there’s a possibility of relocating the casket in the future. Having a burial vault makes exhuming easier. That said, it’s not necessary for you as an individual. There are no federal or provincial laws that require burial vaults. Cemeteries make their own rules and regulations. Thankfully, most Canadian cemeteries do not require one.
However, if you must buy, you can get a grave liner instead. It serves a similar purpose and is more affordable. You can also purchase an air-sealed casket or a metal burial vault. Both options are less expensive than a concrete burial vault, which is made to last several lifetimes. Another alternative you might consider is green burial. It’s a form of burial that doesn’t involve the use of embalming fluids or burial vaults. It is a direct earth burial that only requires wrapping the body in a biodegradable shroud, container, or casket.
Consider Having a Cremation
Cremation is another way to avoid paying for a burial vault and reduce funeral costs. With a cremation, disposing of the body is no longer limited to the cemetery. You can keep the ashes in an urn at home, spread them in a meaningful location, or have a water burial. Even if you still want a burial with a headstone to visit, an urn vault is significantly more affordable than a burial vault. And the most important thing is having a beautiful, serene space to say goodbye and honor your loved one. Our Prince Albert, SK cremation services understand this. That’s why we offer different funeral and cremation services. Whatever option you choose, we can help. Call us today to speak with our funeral directors or get started online.