German federal police say that they found 19 migrants at a highway stop in Bavaria who were suffering from hypothermia after their driver disappeared and left them in the back of an unheated truck for hours.

Temperatures were hovering around -20 C (-4 F).

Police spokesman Rainer Scharf said Sunday that the migrants, among them five children, eventually asked people at the highway stop near Brannenburg for help who then called police.

Scharf said the migrants, who got on the truck in Italy, didn't carry papers but said they came from Syria, Iraq and Iran. They paid traffickers between 500 and 800 euros ($525-840) per person and had come to Germany to apply for asylum. They told police the truck had been experiencing engine problems before the driver left.