Border Patrol responds to coronavirus concerns, seeing increase in Chinese nationals

Local News
BO.JPG

Border Patrol responds to coronavirus concerns, seeing increase in Chinese nationals (source: CBS 4 photo)

Border Patrol agents are taking all measures to protect against any and all viral viruses. 

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has arrested people from over 148 different countries both at and between our ports of entry this fiscal year. 

Thursday, the Acting Chief Patrol Agent of the Rio Grande Valley Sector, Austin Skero, said there is an increase in the number of Chinese nationals being apprehended in the RGV. 

“During the peak of the humanitarian crisis, we were apprehending around three Chinese nationals per day. This year we are seeing approximately five per day. Operationally speaking, this has been very manageable and represents an extremely small percentage of our overall daily apprehension totals,” said Chief Skero. 

If five Chinese nationals are being apprehended daily, that would equal to 140 monthly and about 700 Chinese apprehensions this fiscal year. 

These numbers are for the Rio Grande Valley sector alone. 

Chief Skero says no confirmed cases of the coronavirus are present at any Border Patrol facility even with this increase in Chinese apprehensions nor have agents encountered a migrant with the coronavirus. 

 “Although we haven’t encountered any issues to date, we do have measures in place to identify individuals with signs of illness who may be potentially infected with a communicable disease,” said Chief Skero. 

But if that changes, CBP is ready and has policies in place to contain the situation. 

“In coordination with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), CBP has measures already in place to identify individuals they encounter with signs of illness who may be potentially infected with a communicable disease. Consistent with these existing procedures to prevent the spread of communicable disease, individuals identified with symptoms of illness are referred to CDC or local health officials for additional health screening. Border Patrol agents are reminded of proper precautionary measures to protect against communicable diseases as recommended by the CDC,” said Skero. 

Those measures have been discussed with local health officials as well. 

“I was briefed by our Border Patrol because we’re concerned about those people coming in not only through legal ports of entry, but illegally as well and we’re really proud of our Border Patrol and they really are on top of it and are taking all of the precautions necessary to keep people from crossing illegally into our area,” said Richard Cortez, Hidalgo County Judge. 

There are daily updates given from the CDC and a plan of action to combat any virus from flooding our borders is in progress. 

“We have been working aggressively on a border strategy on airports and with clinicians to detect people who have this virus early and appropriately,” said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, CDC Vaccine Expert. 

There are zero cases of coronavirus in the Rio Grande Valley to date. 

There are zero cases of coronavirus in Northern Mexico, alike. 


Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

COVID-19 SAFETY TIPS

COVID Tip: Wash Your Hands

COVID Tip: Cover When Coughing and Sneezing

COVID Tip: Disinfecting

COVID Tip: Cover Your Mouth

COVID Tip: Avoid Close Contact

COVID-19 Tip: Disinfect Areas

COVID-19 Tip: Wash Hands Often

ValleyCentral App Links

App Store Link
Google Play Link
More Throwback Thursday