Saturday, June 22, 2024

Bus and tractor trailer collide on Sinaloa highway, killing at least 20

At least 20 people died and another 16 or so were injured early Tuesday morning when the bus they were on collided with a tractor-trailer. 

The fatal accident occurred at around 4:30 a.m. on Highway 15D about halfway between Mazatlán and Culiacán in the state of Sinaloa, near the small community of Boscoso in the municipality of Elota. The collision involved a double-decker bus owned by the company Norte de Sinaloa that was traveling from Guadalajara, Jalisco to Los Mochis, Sinaloa. Both vehicles were burned beyond repair.

Most of the dead were on a bus travelling to the seaside town of Los Mochis. (@theinformantofc/X)

Some preliminary reports put the number of dead at 22, but the story was still developing on Tuesday. As of 12 p.m., it was still uncertain how many people were traveling on the bus, although one outlet stated that there had been at least 37 passengers aboard7. As of noon Wednesday, the names of the deceased had yet to be released and the section of highway near kilometer 104 where the crash occurred remained closed in both directions. 

Preliminary witness accounts varied. One version reported in several publications asserts the tractor-trailer had overturned on the highway and that the bus could not avoid colliding with it, causing both vehicles to burst into flames. Another states that the fire initially broke out in the trailer and spread to the bus. 

The National Guard and other security and civil protection agencies were immediately called to the scene, and the members of the state Attorney General’s Office (FGR) began investigating.

Personnel from Sinaloa’s Civil Protection agency released a partial list of survivors. A 7-month-old girl and four adults were listed among five people who did not require medical care, while the list of people taken to hospitals included 15 people ages 25 to 57 and a 14-year-old boy who had burns.

Local authorities have opened an investigation into the circumstances of the crash. (Omar Niño/X)

“I express my deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the people who died in the unfortunate accident,” Sinaloa Governor Rubén Rocha Moya wrote on his X account. “All institutions, of the state and the federation, are currently focused on caring for the injured. Later we will give complete and reliable information about the facts.”

In other posts, users noted that the road conditions in that area are not good. “That road is rubbish,” Marco Guillén wrote on X. “There are so many accidents because it is unusable and the government does not hold the concessionaires accountable.”

According to Infobae, the 181.5-km Mazatlán-Culiacán toll highway is concessioned to IDEAL, an infrastructure group owned by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim Helú. In 2009, he won a bid to operate the highway for 30 years.

“There is enormous negligence on the part of many, and among all of them is the lack of attention from the highway administration,” one Sinaloan wrote on social media.

With reports from Infobae, Quadratin, Aristegui Noticias and El Sol de Mazatlán

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