A DIGITAL service used to investigate deaths across the Black Country has had its future secured.

It was feared the digital autopsy service used by the Black Country Coroner to conduct non-invasive post mortems would close.

But the four local councils have come to an agreement that they hope will secure the future of the service.

The scanning service, which has been run by iGene UK since it opened in 2014, provides an alternative to traditional post mortem when the coroner is determining a cause of death.

Councillor Syeda Khatun, Sandwell Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for neighbourhoods and communities, said: “We are really pleased our discussions with iGene UK have been successful.

“This is a valuable facility, not only for the Black Country Coroner who is very much in favour of using digital autopsy wherever possible, but also for families who take comfort from the use of the digital autopsy facility when they lose a loved one.

“For a number of years Sandwell has played a significant role in establishing digital autopsy as an option for coroners and we are confident the arrangements we have put in place should ensure this essential service can be available for many years to come.”