Six ag workers from Mexico died in Idaho Falls crash. Boise consulate offers assistance

The Mexican Consulate in Boise has announced it will be assisting the families of the deceased after a horrific, two-vehicle crash last weekend.

According to a news release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, the passengers in the crashed van were all agricultural workers from Mexico who were in the United States on H-2A Temporary Agricultural Worker visas.

Six people died in the van crash, and nine passengers were injured and taken to a local hospital. The release states, as of Tuesday, seven people remained hospitalized in stable condition, and two have been discharged.

According to Bonneville County Coroner Rick Taylor, the deceased victims include Abel Mejía Martínez, 43, Pedro Manuel Alcantar Mejía, 26, Brandon Ponce Gallegos, 24, Jose Guadalupe Sánchez Medina, 20, Luis Enrique Sereno Perez, 32, and Javier Gomez Alcantar, 36.

“The Consulate contacted the company Signet Farms Services, responsible for hiring the workers, as well as lawyers, to provide the corresponding advice and support,” says the release, which was translated from Spanish to English. “The state government authorities have been notified of what happened and will be coordinating any steps that may be required. The consular representation will promptly follow up on the transfer of the deceased to their places of origin in Mexico and on the investigation by the Idaho State Police and labor authorities.”

The release states the Consulate, along with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, will assist with a full investigation into the crash and sends their condolences to the families of those deceased and injured.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs deeply regrets the death of the six compatriots and conveys its condolences to the affected families, providing them with the necessary consular assistance and protection,” states the release. “Consular assistance and preventive protection actions will be reinforced to safeguard the integrity of people who work in that country under this labor mobility scheme.”

A GoFundMe was also started to raise money for the families of the deceased.

The fundraiser was organized by the employer of the victims, Signet Farms Services, who donated $10,000.

“In the wake of an unimaginable tragedy, our hearts are heavy with grief as we mourn the loss of six beloved members of our team who tragically lost their lives in a devastating car accident on May 18th in Idaho,” the organizers write. “Alongside this profound loss, nine of our colleagues were left with injuries, their lives forever changed by the events of this day.”

According to GoFundMe, the money raised will also go toward assisting the workers who were injured in the crash. The goal is to raise $195,000 to distribute $25,000 to each family of the deceased, and $5,000 to each injured employee.

The fatal crash occurred in the early morning hours of Saturday, May 18, on U.S. Highway 20 close to the Lindsay Boulevard exit in Idaho Falls.

A Dodge Ram pickup was traveling east when “it was driven left of center and collided with a westbound Chevrolet passenger van,” according to a news release from the Idaho State Police.

The van was full with 14 passengers plus the driver at the time of the collision.

“The driver of the van, along with five other passengers in the van, succumbed to their injuries at the scene of the crash,” the release stated. “Nine other passengers of the van were injured and transported to a local hospital via ground ambulances.”

The pickup’s driver was also transported to a hospital for treatment.