A woman who was in the semi-trailer that 53 migrants were killed last month at the U.S. border with Mexico says her friend saved her life. CBS News reported.
Guatemalan national Yenifer Yulisa Cardona Tomás, 20, spoke to the Associated PressMonday she was able to speak from her hospital bed and say that the heat of the day when she and others loaded the semi into it was already high.
She said that the smugglers confiscated everyone’s cellphones before cramming people into the semi from a warehouse. According to the Associated Press, she believed that crushed chicken bouillon was used on the truck’s floor to disperse any smells that dogs might encounter.
Cardona Tomás said that she was cautioned to stay near the door where it would be cooler, advice she then relayed to another friend who also survived the horrific corrections.
“I told a friend that we shouldn’t go to the back and should stay near (the entrance), in the same place without moving,”She spoke to the Associated Press.
Cardona Tomás is being treated at Methodist Hospital Metropolitan in San Antonio near where the semi was discovered. The truck was headed to Houston and Cardona Tomás was going to make her way to North Carolina, CBS News reported.
She stated that the truck made additional stops to collect more migrants, and more people tried sitting closer to the door to get the same reason.
“The people were yelling, some cried. Mostly women were calling for it to stop and to open the doors because it was hot, that they couldn’t breathe,”According to her, she spoke with the Associated Press.
The Associated Press reported that she said people were calling for water. She lost consciousness, and she eventually woken up in a hospital.
Federal officials say the semi carrying Cardona Tomás is believed to be the deadliest human smuggling case in modern U.S. history.
This horrifying discovery was made in San Antonio by a worker who heard the pleas for help, and saw. “stacks of bodies”Officials said that they were in the trailer.
The victims were from Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala.
“This is nothing short of a horrific human tragedy,”Ron Nirenberg, San Antonio Mayor, spoke at a news conference close to the grisly scene.
The Department of Homeland Security made a statement declaring that they were “horrified at this tragic loss of life near San Antonio. This speaks to the desperation of migrants who would put their lives in the hands of callous human smugglers who show no regard for human life.”
According to the city’s fire chief, first responders were being debriefed in order to recover from what they saw.
“We’re not supposed to open up a truck and see stacks of bodies in there,”Hood stated. “None of us come to work imagining that.”
Three others, including the driver, were also arrested and charged by U.S.prosecutors.