8 found dead in tractor-tailer parked outside Texas Walmart

8 found dead in tractor-tailer parked outside Texas Walmart

8 found dead in tractor-tailer parked outside Texas Walmart

The driver was arrested, and almost 20 others rescued from the rig were hospitalized in dire condition, many with extreme dehydration and heatstroke, officials said.

San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood, who stood alongside McManus at the press conference, said firefighters arrived on the scene at 12:26 a.m. local time, and began pulling the people out of the truck. The San Antonio Police Department rushed to the spot after being alerted by a Walmart employee.

San Antonio police chief, William McManus is calling this a "horrific tragedy".

That check led police to a grisly discovery: eight dead and 30 injured, including children, inside the back of an 18-wheeler tractor-trailer.

McManus said the people in the truck ranged from school-age juveniles to adults in their 20s and 30s.

Hood said those in the trailer were left there without any signs of water. Officials also said they saw a number of vehicles captured on security camera footage that came in and picked up a number of people who survived the trip. The driver of the tractor-trailer is in custody and faces state and federal charges.

The truck's driver was arrested and will be charged, said Richard Durbin, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Texas, and prosecutors will work to identify others responsible.

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The authorities are treating it as a human trafficking incident.

US Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly has been to Mexico twice to discuss immigration, human trafficking and the spiraling cross-border drugs trade.

Several other people, possibly dozens, were found inside the truck, which did not have a working air conditioning system.

"The truck was loaded with people", Hood said. The employee returned with some water and called authorities. After an initial search of the area around the Walmart, it is not known whether others escaped the truck before it was discovered by police. They say responding officers found the people in the tractor-trailer.

The suspected driver of the vehicle has been detained, McManus said.

Last October, also in Veracruz state, four migrants suffocated in a truck carrying 55 people.