Breaking: California hospital working with Mexican consulate after 15 killed in SUV crash
At least 15 people were confirmed dead Tuesday at the scene of a collision involving a bus and a semi-truck in Imperial County, California, local authorities confirmed to Fox News.
The crash occurred in Holtville, a town about 125 miles outside of San Diego, according to Fox 11 Los Angeles.
The El Centro Regional Medical Center said during a Tuesday news conference that there were 28 passengers inside an “SUV” that struck a semi-truck full of gravel. Four people were flown out from the scene via helicopter to Desert Regional Medical Center, and seven people were transported to El Centro Regional Medical Center, one of whom died after arrival, officials said.
Three patients were transferred to Pioneers Memorial Hospital in Brawley, California.
An El Centro Regional Medical Center official who was on site when the patients arrived said at the news conference that the surviving victims were being treated for “several different life threatening injuries.”
“Several patients did get transferred out those were the most critically ill, the ones that were flown from the scene,” the offical said. “The ones that came into us had injuries ranging from fractures to life threatening head injuries [and] chest injuries.”
The official added that the victims, including those who were transferred out of El Centro Regional Medical Center, are in stable condition.
DailyMail reported that officials believed the victims involved in the incident were undocumented immigrants.
“I want to address an issue upfront with everybody. We don’t use the term undocumented in the hospitals,” Dr. Adolphe Edward, Chief Medical Officer at El Centro Regional Medical Center, said during the conference. “To us, these folks that came to us are patients.”
Edward added that hospital officials are “aware” that children were involved in the crash, but referred requests for further information to the Imperial County Sheriff’s Office, who will hold a news with additional information on the incident later this afternoon. El Centro Regional Medical Center is working with the Mexican consulate regarding further updates on patient conditions.
A spokesperson for the El Centro Border Patrol told Fox News that agents responded to the incident at the request of the Imperial County Sheriff’s Department and are on scene to provide assistance to local law enforcement as needed.
The investigation into the incident is being headed by the California Highway Patrol.
The Imperial County Fire Department and California Highway Patrol did not immediately respond to inquiries from Fox News. Authorities did not give further details but said more information would be available later on Tuesday.