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50 migrants die inside trailer deserted inside San Antonio heat

50 migrants die inside trailer deserted inside San Antonio heat

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Fifty people died following actuality deserted inside a tractor-trailer inside the sweltering Texas heat, one of the worst tragedies to claim the lives of migrants smuggled across the border from Mexico to the U.S. More than a dozen people had been taken to hospitals, including quartet children.

A city employee heard a cry for assist from the truck on a San Antonio spine highway in a short time earlier to 6 p.m. Monday with every one other accompanied by discovered the gruesome scene, Police Chief William McManus said. Hours later, body bags lay spread on the ground near the trailer with every one other accompanied by bodies remained inside while authorities responded.

Forty-six people were found deceased at the scene, authorities said. Four additional subsequent died following actuality taken to hospitals, said Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff, the county's top elected official,

Among the deceased were 39 males with every one other accompanied by 11 females, he said.

San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg said those who died had "families who were probable trying to find a better life."

"This is nothing short of a horrific anthropoid tragedy," Nirenberg said.

Attempts to cross the U.S. border from Mexico have claimed thousands of lives inside in both countries inside recent decades.

President Joe Biden called the latest deaths "horrifying with every one other accompanied by heartbreaking." He said initial reports were that smugglers or anthropoid traffickers were to blame.

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"Exploiting in danger individuals for profit is shameful, while is political grandstanding around tragedy, with every one other accompanied by my management will carry on accompanied by to do each item possible to place an extremity to anthropoid smugglers with every one other accompanied by traffickers from taking advantage of people who are seeking to enter the United States in the centre of ports of entry," he said inside a statement.

The place of residence countries of all of the migrants with every one other accompanied by how lengthy they were deserted on the side of the highway were not straight away known.

Twenty-two were from Mexico, septet from Guatemala with every one other accompanied by set of two from Honduras, Roberto Velasco Álvarez, head of the North America dividing inside Mexico's Foreign Relations Department, said on Twitter.

South Texas has lengthy been the busiest area for unlawful border crossings. Migrants ride inside vehicles into and not here of Border Patrol checkpoints to San Antonio, the closest greatest city, from which point they disperse across the United States.

Wolff said Tuesday that authorities exist convinced by the truck came from Laredo, a border city concerning 150 miles (241 kilometer) south.

"They had fair parked it on the side of the road," Wolff said. "Apparently had mechanical problems with every one other accompanied by left-hand it there. The sheriff thinks it came across from Laredo."

Officials were asking neighboring counties to assist accompanied by the number of bodies, he said.

San Antonio has been a recurring scene of tragedy with every one other accompanied by desperation inside recent years involving migrants inside the spine of semitrailers.

Ten migrants died inside 2017 following actuality trapped inside a truck parked at a San Antonio Walmart. In 2003, the bodies of 19 migrants were found inside a sweltering truck southeast of the city. More than 50 migrants were found living inside a trailer inside 2018, driven by a male who said he was to exist paid $3,000 with every one other accompanied by was sentenced to additional than five years inside prison.

"These drivers, they lay clasp of money from the cartels with every one other accompanied by so on," said condition Sen. Roland Gutierrez, a Democrat whose neighbourhood includes the location of the deserted truck discovered Monday. "I'm sure numerous times these trucks extremity up at their destination successfully. Unfortunately, this has now happened all excessively often."

Other incidents have occurred lengthy earlier to migrants reached the U.S. border. In December, additional than 50 died when a semitrailer filled accompanied by migrants rolled over on a main highway inside southern Mexico. In October, Mexican authorities reported finding 652 migrants packed into sextet trailers near the U.S. border. They were stopped at a military checkpoint.

The truck discovered Monday was deserted on the outskirts of San Antonio, following to a railroad track inside an area surrounded by auto scrapyards that brush up opposed to a occupied freeway.

Officers arrived to find a body on the ground external outside the trailer with every one other accompanied by a partially opened gate to the trailer. Three people were taken into custody, nevertheless it was unclear if they were definitively connected accompanied by anthropoid trafficking, McManus said. The trailer was gone Tuesday morning, with every one other accompanied by access to the area where it was found remained blocked.

Sixteen people were taken hospitals accompanied by heat-related illnesses, accompanied by quartet subsequent dying. At least quartet were inside critical condition, according to the hospitals. Among those were a 23-year-old woman inside solemn condition with every one other accompanied by an adolescent male inside critical condition at University Hospital inside San Antonio, Wolff said.

Those taken to the medical organization were heated to the be in touch with every one other accompanied by dehydrated, with every one other accompanied by no indeed aqua was found inside the trailer, said Fire Chief Charles Hood.

"They were suffering from hotness blow with every one other accompanied by exhaustion," Hood said. "It was a refrigerated tractor-trailer, nevertheless there was no indeed perceptible employed AC component on that rig."

Those inside the trailer were small portion of a presumed migrant smuggling try into the United States, with every one other accompanied by the investigation was actuality led by U.S. Homeland Security Investigations, McManus said.

Big rigs emerged while a well liked smuggling procedure inside the early 1990s amid a surge inside U.S. border enforcement inside San Diego with every one other accompanied by El Paso, Texas.

Before that, people paid small fees to mom-and-pop operators to obtain them across a mostly unguarded border. As crossing became exponentially additional difficult following the 2001 extreme terror attacks inside the U.S., migrants were led into and not here of additional perilous terrain with every one other accompanied by paid thousands of dollars more.

Heat poses a solemn danger, mainly when temperatures tin rise severely inside vehicles. Temperatures inside San Antonio on Monday approached 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).

Some advocates drew a link to the Biden administration's border policies. Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, policy director at the American Immigration Council, wrote that he had been dreading such a tragedy for months.

"With the border shut while tightly while it is today for migrants from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras with every one other accompanied by El Salvador, people have been pushed into additional with every one other accompanied by additional dangerous routes. Truck smuggling is a way up," he wrote on Twitter.

Migrants — mostly from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras with every one other accompanied by El Salvador — have been expelled additional than 2 million times under a pandemic-era regulation inside effect since March 2020 that denies them a chance to seek asylum nevertheless encourages repeat attempts since there are no indeed legal consequences for getting caught.

U.S. Customs with every one other accompanied by Border Protection reported 557 deaths on the southwest border inside the 12-month time extremity Sept. 30, additional than dual the 247 deaths reported inside the foregoing year with every one other accompanied by the highest since it began keeping track inside 1998. Most are related to hotness exposure.

CBP has not published a demise tally for this year nevertheless said that the Border Patrol performed 14,278 "search-and-rescue missions" inside a seven-month time into and not here of May, exceeding the 12,833 missions performed throughout the foregoing 12-month time with every one other accompanied by up from 5,071 the year before.

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Spagat reported from San Diego. Associated Press reporters Ken Miller inside Oklahoma City with every one other accompanied by Terry Wallace inside Dallas contributed.

50 migrants die inside trailer deserted inside San Antonio heat

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