Eight prisoners and two prison officers were killed on Wednesday after a bus conveying 15 prison inmates and staff members plunged off a Texas highway overpass and onto railway tracks, where it was hit by a train.
A spokesman from the Texas Department of Corrections said in a statement, that “one staff member and four offenders have been transported to the Medical Center in Odessa and are receiving medical treatment”.
AFP reports that the horrific accident occurred on a busy stretch of highway shortly after dawn, as the bus carried inmates from one prison facility in Abilene in western Texas to another in the city of El Paso.
Officials said the cause of the accident was unknown but officials said visibility at the time was poor and that the roadway was slick.
Kavin Tinney, chief of a firefighter battalion, told the Odessa American newspaper that “it’s as bad as you can imagine. In 32 years it’s as bad as anything I’ve seen,”
Texas prison officials, who said an investigation was underway, lamented the loss of life.
“It’s with a heavy heart that we mourn the loss of those killed and injured this morning in a tragic accident.