FROM STAFF REPORTS
NEW BRAUNFELS — Ten Mexican immigrants rescued by local police from inside a broiling freight train railcar on Monday are in the custody of federal officials after being treated for life-threatening dehydration.
At about 9:50 p.m. Aug. 18, New Braunfels emergency dispatchers received a 911 call from a Spanish-speaking man who said he and several others were trapped inside a gravel bin on a northbound Union Pacific train. After the train was stopped in northern New Braunfels near FM 306, the New Braunfels police and fire departments located the men after a 30-minute search. None of the men had water when they were found; temperature on Monday reached 100 degrees in New Braunfels, according to the National Weather Service.
First responders did not locate people in any other of the train’s 80 cars, police spokesperson David Ferguson said.
Ambulances took the immigrants to Christus Santa Rosa and Resolute hospitals in New Braunfels where five were treated for dehydration and released the same day to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. Five others in more severe conditions were held overnight for medical treatment.
The men, ranging in age from 17 to 38 years old, also badly blistered feet and said they had for three days through the desert before getting on the train somewhere near Laredo, New Braunfels fire department Batt. Chief Rick Edwards told the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung.
Railroad police and the immigration enforcement agency are conducting investigations.
COVER: A Union Pacific freight train stopped in an industrial area of New Braunfels in 2011. FILE PHOTO by BEN ENGLISH
COVER: The Louis Henne building, built in 1893, in New Braunfels. PHOTO by MIKE RASTIELLO. SAN MARCOS MERCURY GRAPHIC by BRAD ROLLINS.