At least thirteen people died after a SUV collided with a trailer truck in southern California, near the US-Mexico border.
The SUV had 28 occupants, which is three times higher than legally allowed capacity of 8 or 9 persons.
The human loaded SUV drove straight into the path of the gravel loaded trailer truck.
The truck driver and dozens of passengers in the SUV suffered injuries.
Talking about the incident California Highway Patrol Chief Omar Watson said: “Obviously that vehicle is not meant for that many people. It’s unfortunate that that number of people were put into that vehicle.”
He said several of the passengers were ejected from the vehicle upon collision.
A spokesman for Border Patrol, Macario Mora, told the Associated Press that the immigration status of the victims was being investigated.
He said they could be farmworkers involved in harvesting winter greens in the mainly agricultural area.
US authorities are working with the Mexican consulate to determine who was in the vehicle and to notify next of kin.
Special agents from the Homeland Security Investigations office in San Diego are investigating to see if human smuggling was involved.