Laredo Border Patrol provides an inside look at brush operations
LAREDO, TX. (KGNS) - We see them patrolling the bridges as well as the riverbanks making sure the U.S.-Mexico Border is secure but guarding the border can be difficult when going over the hills and through the brush.
With the use of all-terrain vehicles and four legged animals, securing the border can be quite the challenge but for Juan Carlos Gutierrez its part of his daily duties.
“We’re responsible for a checkpoint, highway and operations, brush operations which include patrolling the river and detecting and evicting anybody that wants to make an illegal entry into the country,” said Gutierrez.
Gutierrez is just one of the dozens of agents in charge of protecting more than 38 miles of river and more than 800 square miles in Webb County which is considered a daunting and dangerous task.
“As you can see the environment that we work in and this is the office of a Border Patrol officer on a daily basis is very expensive and rugged. It’s filled with creeks, mesquite trees, a lot of bushes that prevent agents that could easily navigate through the terrain,” said Gutierrez.
With the increase of illegal border crossings taking place during the evening hours, Agent Gutierrez said smugglers use extreme methods to get across.
“We’ve seen many different tactics that they’re driven by the smugglers or the coyotes that include people putting several materials under their shoes that would prevent us clearly see or follow their foot sign, the other thing they use is their clothing, they’ll use camouflage material to blend in to their environment and makes it a little harder to see them at a distance,” said Gutierrez.
Congressman Henry Cuellar is pledging more help to agents in the field to help them do their job.
“We already have plan to provide millions of dollars to Border Patrol for next year,” said Cuellar.
Meanwhile, agent Gutierrez states the agency is always prepared.
“A bunch of tools that helps us do our job including their duty belt, night vision goggles, we have remote surveillance towers, vehicles equipped with those types of cameras,” said Gutierrez.
In the end, agent Gutierrez says it’s all about saving lives.
“The knowledge these people might succumb to the environment, I think it drives them to be able to preserve human life,” said Gutierrez.
If you would like to apply to become a member of the U.S. Border Patrol. You can click here.
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