Saturday, February 28, 2009

Border fence topic of CAB meeting

February 27, 2009
Nogales International
By Jim Price

Construction of the new border fence from Smuggler’s Gulch to Kino Springs was the key topic of the January 2009 meeting at the Citizens Advisory Board to the U.S. Border Patrol (Nogales Station). CAB members were taken to the start point for a view of the steel and concrete barrier that was completed the following week.

Access roads created as part of the barrier project permit rapid response to sensor activation and phone tips. Faster access is yielding a significant reduction in area traffic by forcing the bad guys to move away from more populated areas.

Horses rounded up during drug interventions are treated for injuries and malnourishment according to Border Patrol agents responding to queries from local ranchers. The agents also reported the discovery of 14 new tunnels during the past government fiscal year.

At the February meet, CAB members learned that another 10 tunnels were located between Oct. 1, 2008, and Jan. 19, 2009. The National Tunnel Remediation Task Team filled these tunnels with about 300 yards of cement in recent weeks.

Another critical topic was the release of information regarding Mexico’s equivalent to our 911 system, the 066 Emergency Service Dispatch. Created by a 1999 Presidential Decree, 066 is a highly sophisticated 7-24-365 hook-up that can contact emergency services and law enforcement in Mexico and the United States with incredible clarity and speed. The northern Sonora grid known as C4 ranges from San Luis to Agua Prieta and from Nogales to Cd. Obregon.

As an adjunct, Mexico has erected two camera towers to provide surveillance along the border in Ambos Nogales. They have played a role in cutting crime on the U.S. side as well as in Mexico.

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