At least seven people have been killed and several others injured as a result of a bus crash in northwestern New Mexico on Thursday.
“Officers have confirmed at least four fatalities from the bus at this time. Many bus passengers were transported with serious injuries,” the New Mexico State Police first revealed in a statement. “The exact number of injuries is still being investigated.”
The police later tweeted, “Seven (7) confirmed fatalities on the scene.”
The tragic accident occurred near the town of Thoreau after a semi-tractor trailer experienced a tire blowout and collided with a Greyhound bus on Interstate 40, New Mexico State Police explained.
At least 49 people were aboard the Greyhound bus during the time of the accident, according to Associated Press.
The Associated Press also reported, nine of those people were being treated at the University of New Mexico Hospital.
Three more patients are expected to be transported.
• Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
It is unclear at this time what injuries the victims suffered or if they are expected to survive. The area has since been closed for investigation.
Greyhound spokeswoman Crystal Booker released a statement obtained by the AP.
“We are fully cooperating with local authorities and will also complete an investigation of our own,” Booker explained.
Eyewitness Eric Huff was on his way to the Grand Canyon when he saw the crash.
He told the AP the semi was “shredded to pieces” after hitting the Greyhound bus, which was also in bad shape as its side was torn off and many seats were pressed together.
“It was an awe-inspiring terrible scene,” Huff described.
The driver of the semi-truck “sustained non-life-threatening injuries,” the New Mexico State Police said.
At this time the ages and genders of the victims will not be released.