MEXICO CITY, Dec 11 (IANS): The number of Central American migrants killed after a trailer truck overturned in Mexico’s Chiapas state has increased to 55, Governor Rutilio Escandon has confirmed.
More than 150 undocumented migrants were crammed into the trailer when it overturned at around 3:30 p.m. on Thursday on the highway connecting the state capital Tuxtla Gutierrez and the town of Chiapa de Corzo, reports Xinhua news agency.
“After yesterday’s accident, unfortunately one more person died today (bringing the deaths to 55),” the Governor tweeted on Friday, adding he was working with the federal government to attend to the injured and families of the deceased.
Mexico’s national coordinator of Civil Protection, Laura Velazquez Alzua, who was at the scene of the accident, told reporters that of the 152 migrants on board, 73 were injured and 24 unharmed.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has expressed “pain for these unfortunate, sad events”, and reiterated the need to address the causes of mass migration to prevent further tragedies.
Foreign Affairs Minister Marcelo Ebrard, meanwhile, said his Ministry was in contact with the governments of Guatemala, Ecuador and other countries whose nationals were among the victims.
Authorities said that a mechanical failure caused the truck to hit a retaining wall on a curve before crashing into a pedestrian bridge, leading the cargo container to detach and overturn on the asphalt.