THOREAU, N.M. (CBS News/CBSLA) — At least six people are dead and several others are seriously hurt following a crash involving a Greyhound bus and tractor trailer, according to a local hospital. It happened along Interstate 40 in New Mexico, near the Arizona border.

Investigators believe the tractor trailer crossed the median and hit the bus head on. The front end of the bus was ripped off and debris scattered across the highway as emergency crews desperately tried to reach victims.

The bus was carrying 49 passengers and heading to Phoenix, Ariz., then to San Bernardino, and eventually Los Angeles. Many of the seriously injured people were taken to an area hospital. One trauma center reported getting six patients, with three in critical condition.

The bus had an ultimate destination of Los Angeles, where it was expected to arrive about 1 a.m. Friday.

“We are fully cooperating with local authorities and will also complete an investigation of our own,” Greyhound spokeswoman Crystal Booker said in a statement.

The crash occurred near the town of Thoreau. It forced the closure of the westbound lanes of the interstate and traffic was backing up as travelers were diverted.

It is unclear at this point if any of the victims were heading home to L.A. or the Inland Empire.

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