August 8, 2022

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(Newser) – Rescue workers rushing to a highway accident found a horrific scene of death...


Rescue workers rushing to a highway accident found a horrific scene of death and injury after a freight truck jammed with as many as 200 migrants tipped over and crashed into the base of a steel pedestrian bridge in southern Mexico. The migrants inside the cargo trailer were flipped, tossed and crushed into a pile that mingled the living and the dead. By late Thursday, the death toll stood at 53, and authorities said at least 54 people had been injured, the AP reports. It was one of the worst single-day death tolls for migrants in Mexico since the 2010 massacre of 72 migrants by the Zetas drug cartel in the northern state of Tamaulipas.

Rescue workers who first arrived said that even more migrants had been aboard the truck when it crashed and had fled for fear of being detained by immigration agents. One paramedic said some of those who hurried into surrounding neighborhoods were bloodied or bruised, but still limped away in their desperation to escape. About 200 migrants may have been packed into the truck, said Guatemala’s top human rights official, Jordán Rodas. While shocking, that number is not unusual for migrant smuggling operations in Mexico, and the sheer weight of the load—combined with speed and a nearby curve—may have been enough to throw the truck off balance, authorities said.

Luis Manuel Moreno, head of the Chiapas state civil defense office, said about 21 of the injured had serious wounds and were taken to local hospitals. The federal Attorney General’s Office said three were critically injured in the crash on a highway leading from the Guatemalan border toward the Chiapas state capital. One survivor said there were migrants mostly from Guatemala and Honduras aboard and estimated there were eight to 10 young children. He said he was trying to reach the United States, but now expected to be deported to Guatemala. (Read more Mexico stories.)

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