Cross-border carriers who use a popular Texas port of entry will need to make alternate plans when it comes to cargo processing when crossing the United States and Mexico border.
On Friday, Sept. 15, U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s El Paso Office of Field Operations announced it would be temporarily suspending cargo processing at the Bridge of the Americas port of entry beginning Sept. 18.
The cargo lot at the Bridge of the Americas is typically open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday.
“The temporary suspension at BOTA will allow CBP’s Office of Field Operations officers to assist the U.S. Border Patrol in processing noncitizens who have arrived between the ports of entry, including vulnerable populations like families and unaccompanied children,” the agency said in a statement. “CBP regularly plans for and executes contingency measures, such as this, to support the overarching agency mission and ensure the safety and wellbeing of those in the agency’s custody.”
For carriers that regularly utilize the port of entry, the agency suggested using the nearby Ysleta, Santa Teresa or Marcelino Serna (Tornillo) cargo facilities as alternative entry points during the suspension of services.
There is no timetable for when the port will resume regular operations. In a release, the agency said it would “work to return normal operations as quickly as feasible.”
One of four ports of entry in El Paso, The Bridge of the Americas connects the U.S. with the Mexican land port of Cordova in Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico. The port processes toll-free inbound and outbound commercial, non-commercial and pedestrian traffic. Because of this, officials said the port receives heavy traffic, “with many travelers and commercial vehicles choosing to enter and exit through this facility in lieu of paying a toll.”
Drivers can monitor border wait times at various ports of entry here. LL