San Antonio: In what appears to be the most recent incident of human trafficking along the US-Mexico border, authorities on Monday found a truck carrying 46 dead bodies of migrants in San Antonio, Texas.
Sixteen others, including four children, were found alive and taken to hospitals with heat-related illnesses, police and medical officials told a news conference.
“The patients that we saw were hot to the touch. They were suffering from heat stroke [and] exhaustion,” San Antonio Fire Chief said.
A San Antonio Fire Department official said they found “stacks of bodies” and no signs of water in the truck, which was found next to railroad tracks in a remote area on the city’s southern outskirts.
Temperatures in San Antonio, which is about 160 miles (250 km) from the Mexican border, swelled to a high of 103 degrees Fahrenheit (39.4 degrees Celsius) on Monday with high humidity.
The city’s Police Chief William McManus said a person who works in a nearby building heard a cry for help and came out to investigate. The worker found the trailer doors partially opened, looked inside and found a number of dead bodies.
San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg said the 46 who died had “families who were likely trying to find a better life.”
“This is nothing short of a horrific human tragedy,” Nirenberg said.
No children were among those found deceased, the officials said.
The discovery is among the worst instances of migrant deaths in recent history and comes amid a rise in illegal migration into the US across its southern border.