Twenty-three people died on Monday in Mexico City after the city’s subway train overpass collapsed onto the busy road below, reports NBC. Mexican authorities said that more than 60 people for injured during the collapse.
The NBC report said that “photos and video from the scene showed mangled train cars hanging from the crumbled overpass and rescue personnel searching and transporting the injured on stretchers.”
Mexico City’s mayor, Claudia Sheinbaum, spoke at a press conference at the crash site, explaining the cause of the collapse was “a support beam” that gave way. The report stated, “The mayor, wearing a hard hat and face mask, told reporters at the site that 65 people had been taken to hospitals, and seven were in serious condition.”
The support beam reportedly collapsed around 10:30 p.m. “on Line 12 near the Olivos station in the southeast of the city.” The mayor called for an investigation into the accident, saying, “If there’s a need for an external investigation, there will be one.” She vowed that they “will get to the truth, and we will get justice.”
Lo ocurrido hoy en el Metro es una terrible tragedia. Mi solidaridad a las víctimas y sus familias.Por supuesto deben investigarse causas y deslindarse responsabilidades. Me reitero a la entera disposición de las autoridades para contribuir en todo lo que sea necesario.
— Marcelo Ebrard C. (@m_ebrard) May 4, 2021
Former Mexico City mayor and current Foreign Relations Secretary, Marcelo Ebrard, oversaw the city while Line 12 was being built. He tweeted after the subway collapse, saying, “What happened today in the metro is a terrible tragedy. My solidarity with the victims and their families.”
Ebrard echoed Mexico City mayor Claudia Sheinbaum and President of Mexico in calling for transparency, saying, “Of course, causes must be investigated, and responsibilities defined. I reiterate to all authorities my complete willingness to contribute to everything necessary.”
Ebrard stepped down as mayor of Mexico City shortly after critics raised serious questions about the design flaws of the overpass. Mexican authorities reportedly shut down line 12 in 2013 to repair the tracks.
Background on the suspicious construction of Line 12 by the Mexico News Daily:
“After trying to postpone it many times, former Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard will be questioned regarding the blunders in the construction of the 12th line of the city’s subway, also known as the Golden Line, stalled since the beginning of current Mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera’s term.
Ebrard, a Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) presidential hopeful in 2012, before declining in favor of Andrés Manuel López Obrador also known as AMLO, has refused any responsibility in both the failure of this project and its elevated cost.
It has been reported that one of Line 12’s main issues is that the train cars don’t match the installed tracks, producing major wear and tear on the equipment with the possibility that accidents will result.”
Investigations will determine the fault of the collapse, but that doesn’t help the residents of Mexico City, who are left wondering what happened to their loved ones.
A female resident that spoke to NBC’s Telemundo told of her fear and frustration. Gisela del Ocaso said she has been looking for her husband, Miguel Angel Espinosa Flores, since the crash. She said, “I don’t know what to do. We are desperate. I have two children.” Mexico’s civil protection agency published an updated list of victims.