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|Firefighters and forensic medical personnel carry an injured person into a helicopter after a tourist van and a cargo truck collided on the Lagos de Moreno highway in Zapotlanejo, Jalisco State, Mexico. (AFP/Ulises Ruiz)|
Many of the victims were trapped inside the burning mini-bus, whose charred chassis could be seen impaled on the back of the truck on the highway from the family's native Guanajuato state to the Pacific beach resort of Puerto Vallarta.
Twelve more people were injured in the pre-dawn crash in the western state of Jalisco. Two were in serious condition and were airlifted to a hospital in the state capital, Guadalajara, said state emergency authorities.
Officials said the truck had stopped on the side of the road when the mini-bus crashed into it.
"It was a tourism service hired by a family" traveling to Puerto Vallarta for the holidays, said Samuel Flores of the Jalisco state civil protection service.
Mexico is often hit by deadly accidents during the Christmas season, as roads fill with vacationers and revelers.