(CNN) -- — A speeding tanker truck carrying gas crashed and exploded in a huge fireball along a highway near Mexico City Tuesday, killing at least 20 people and injuring dozens more, officials said.
Salvador Neme, the secretary for citizen security in Mexico state, said two of the victims were children.
"There was a flash, then a noise, and the ground began to shake," said Dulce Gonzalez, who lives in the neighborhood where the tanker plowed into homes early Tuesday morning.
Flames engulfed cars and houses near the explosion, video from CNN affiliate Foro TV showed.
According to initial reports from police, the tanker was speeding and the driver lost control, crashing into several homes and cars before exploding, Mexico's state-run Notimex news agency reported.
Hours after the explosion, 23 wounded victims remained hospitalized. Eight of them were in serious condition, Neme said.
The driver of the tanker was also in the hospital but under arrest, Neme said.
The blast occurred in the municipality of Ecatepec, in the state of Mexico.
At least 45 homes were damaged and 16 vehicles burned in the city, a large suburb near the nation's capital, Ecatepec Mayor Pablo Bedolla said.
Authorities opened a shelter in the area for 100 people left homeless after the fiery blast.
-- CNNMexico.com's Mauricio Torres contributed to this report.