In the wee hours of Tuesday morning, officials confirmed that at least 23 people had died in the crash, including a number of minors. Authorities have released the names of more than 70 injured people taken to local hospitals.
But for some, the search for their loved ones was just beginning.
“I’m looking for my son”, Marisol Tapia told reporters at the scene of the accident through sobs. “I can’t find him anywhere, in any of the ambulances.”
Hours later, her 13-year-old son, Brandon Giovani Hernández Tapia, was still missing: Ms Tapia and her mother were becoming desperate, not knowing whether he was dead or alive.
“I’ve been to all the hospitals and they say he’s not there,” she said told reporters gathered at the crash site later Tuesday morning for a press conference with opposition politicians. “The metro was not built alone – this loophole has been around for a long time and no one has done anything.”
On social media, families searched for information on missing persons. Details of the injured began to emerge, but the dead remained unnamed. Four bodies had been trapped in one of the train cars, according to Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum.
“All support will be given to the victims,” Sheinbaum said at a morning press conference, noting that 15 of the dead had not yet been identified. “Our solidarity with all family members who have lost someone.”
A total of 79 injured people were taken to hospitals, Sheinbaum said, two of whom later died. Five of the injured had not yet been identified, the mayor said, but among those hospitalized were three minors and three elderly people.
Some witnesses to the event were also injured.
“I was going to my mother’s house and a big stone fell on me,” Esmeralda Serrano, 21, who lives in a neighborhood near where the accident happened, told El País, a Spanish language newspaper.
Late in the morning on Tuesday, calls for help in locating the missing continued to pour in on social networks, while the hashtag # NosFaltan23 or “We are missing 23” became a rallying cry.
“My friends, I need your help, we can’t find it (Nancy Lezama Salgado),” one user wrote. on Twitter. “She was also in the metro, we only found her sister, please share.”
Government officials, including those involved in the construction and maintenance of the deadly metro line, extended their condolences to the families of the victims.
“This is the most terrible accident we have ever had,” Marcelo Ebrard, the country’s foreign minister who was mayor when the now collapsed line was first built, told a conference. Press. “A very sad day for Mexico City, for everyone.”