A bus carrying cruise ship passengers on a tour of ancient Mayan ruins flipped on a highway in southeast Mexico early Tuesday, killing at least 12 people and injuring 18.
The fatalities include five Americans, four Canadians, two Swedes and one Mexican, ABC News reported, citing an unidentified official familiar with the investigation.
Authorities confirmed to Reuters that a child was among the dead. A South Florida family told the Sun Sentinel they believed an 11-year-old boy and his grandmother were killed.
The bus had been headed toward the Chacchoben Ruins, roughly 290 miles south of Cancun. It was carrying 31 people, including 27 passengers traveling on two Royal Caribbean cruise ships, when the driver lost control in Quintana Roo state. Those two ships were Celebrity Equinox and Serenade of the Seas, the cruise line said.
“Our hearts go out to all those involved in the bus accident,” Royal Caribbean spokeswoman Cynthia Martinez said in a statement. “We are doing all we can to care for our guests, including assisting with medical care and transportation.”
Passenger Vítor Maciel Fontes Jacques, 32, told ABC News he was with his wife and five family members on the bus when it suddenly ran off the side of the road.
“Then the driver pushed it over and it started flipping over,” Jacques said. “And then the bus flipped on its side.” He said the wreck left him with a broken clavicle, and his sister-in-law with a head injury that required surgery.
Serenade of the Seas passenger Chris Brawley told the Sun Sentinel he was traveling on another bus to the same Mayan ruins when it came upon the wrecked vehicle, just minutes after it flipped.
He described the two-lane road as narrow, with no shoulder or guardrail. The road was dry and there was no sign of any other vehicle being involved in the crash, he said.
Last year, 11 tourists were killed in a crash, also in Quintana Roo, in which their bus flipped en route to Cancun, The Associated Press reported.