46 bodies recovered in abandoned lorry in Texas...

46 bodies recovered in abandoned lorry in Texas

 International Desk daily-bangladesh.com

 Published: 08:47 AM, 28 June 2022   Updated: 04:48 PM, 28 June 2022

Photo: Collected

Photo: Collected

At least 46 people, believed to be migrants, have been found dead in an abandoned lorry on the outskirts of San Antonio, Texas, USA. 

A fire official said 16 people including four children had also been taken to hospital.

The survivors were "hot to the touch" and suffering from heat stroke and heat exhaustion. 

San Antonio, which is 250km (150 miles) from the US-Mexican border, is a major transit route for people smugglers. 

Charles Hood, San Antonio Fire Chief, said emergency responders arrived at the scene at about 18:00 local (23:00 GMT) after responding to reports of a dead person.

Fire officials found a "trailer with a body outside and several they could visibly see inside when the doors were opened".

He added that the lorry had no working air conditioning and that there was no water inside it.

According to KSAT TV channel, the vehicle was discovered next to rail tracks in San Antonio's Southwest Side.

A large number of emergency responders, including police, fire, and ambulance services, could be seen surrounding the large truck.

San Antonio's Police Chief William McManus said the investigation had now been handed over to federal agents and three people were being held in custody.

Mexico's Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, said the country's consul was en route to the site of the discovery, but added that the victims' nationalities were still unknown.

Texas's Republican Governor Greg Abbott blamed US President Joe Biden for the deaths, describing them as a "result of his deadly open border policies".

Beto O'Rourke, the Democratic candidate running against Mr Abbott, said the reports were devastating and called for urgent action to "dismantle human smuggling rings and replace them with expanded avenues for legal migration".

Immigration is a contentious political issue in the United States, where last year a record numbers of undocumented migrants were detained crossing into the country from Mexico - many traveling along extremely risky and unsafe routes.

San Antonio's climate is hot in the summer months with temperatures there reaching 39.4C (103F) on Monday. - BBC