At least 10 people were killed after a passenger van suspected of transporting two dozen undocumented migrants was in a Texas road accident, state officials and a witness said Wednesday.
Texas Department of Public Security (DPS) troopers said in a statement they were investigating a "major crash" near Falfurrias, a few miles from the Mexican border in the state's southeast.
A Ford passenger van was speeding north on a highway when, according to a witness, around 4 pm (2100 GMT) the driver "veered off the roadway, striking a metal utility pole and a stop sign.
"The driver and nine passengers were pronounced dead at the scene of the crash," the Texas Highway Patrol said in a statement.
Brooks County Sheriff Urbino Martinez said there were 30 people in the vehicle at the time of the accident, according to the New York Times.
"It appears that they are undocumented immigrants, but we have to work with consulates," DPS spokesman Sergeant Nathan Brandley told AFP.
Earlier the DPS said that 20 people had been transferred to hospital following the crash.
Smugglers often use overcrowded vehicles to ship migrants from the border.
In March, an alleged smuggler was charged after 13 people died in a collision between a heavy truck and a crowded vehicle in southern California.
Migrant arrivals to the United States had declined markedly at the onset of the pandemic but began to pick up slightly in 2020, before surging since President Joe Biden took office.
Republicans accuse Biden of causing the spike in arrivals by relaxing the draconian migration policies imposed by his predecessor Donald Trump.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)