UPDATE: 5:30 p.m. EDT — The Associated Press reported the death toll at 13 with 31 injured in the crash of a casino tour bus and a semi-tractor-trailer. Firefighters removed bodies from the wreckage using ladders to climb into the bus, the front of which was crushed.
The accident occurred about 5:15 a.m., 100 miles east of Los Angeles, just outside Palm Springs. Five of the injured were reported in critical condition.
UPDATE: 4:45 p.m. EDT — The Desert Sun reported the bus belonged to USA Holiday, a Los Angeles tour company, and was driven by one of the company’s owners.
A passenger told the newspaper the bus was returning to Los Angeles after a trip to the Red Earth Casino in Thermal, California.
USA Holiday says on its Instagram page it has been ferrying passengers to Southern California casinos for 25 years.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration records indicate the company has only one bus and one licensed driver. The company has not reported any crashes in the past two years, the Desert Sun said.
Sunday’s crash was among the deadliest in California in recent years. Ten people were killed in a fiery crash near Orland, California, in April 2014 when a FedEx tractor-trailer crossed the Interstate 5 median and hit a bus carrying high school students.
UPDATE: 1:30 p.m. EDT — At least 11 people were killed and 30 people injured in a deadly tour bus-semi-truck accident on Interstate 10 near Palm Springs, California, Sunday, the Desert Sun reported.
The early morning crash shut down the westbound lanes of the freeway for hours.
A semi-truck and a tour bus crashed in Desert Hot Springs, California, early Sunday, killing at least seven people.
The Desert Sun newspaper reported at least 21 people were taken from the bus to Palm Springs-area hospitals. The truck driver was unhurt.
KESQ-TV, Palm Springs, reported multiple injuries in addition to the deaths. The accident occurred at 5:17 a.m., the California Highway Patrol said.
Cause of the crash was not immediately determined, KABC, Los Angeles, reported.
KNBC, Universal City, reported the bus plowed into the back of the truck on the westbound Interstate 10 Freeway. Video showed the front part of the bus was demolished.
"The intrusion into the bus compartment is significant," California Highway Patrol officer Stephanie Hamilton said.
The Desert Sun said firefighters used ladders to pull victims from bus windows.
This is a developing story.