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Truckers face delays at US-Mexico border due to CBP lane closures

Posted at 1:22 PM, Apr 10, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-10 16:22:36-04

(KGTV) - Truck drivers hauling goods across the border in Otay Mesa are spending hours in traffic due to a massive transfer of U.S. border agents reassigned to deal with a surge in immigration numbers.

Javier Santana transports carbon dioxide and runs a company that has several drivers who have to cross the border multiple times each week. He said every time they can't cross because lanes are closed "it's thousands of dollars we lose. It's bad, and it's going to get worse."

Last week, U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced that they would shuffle border agents around, closing commercial inspection lanes so more migrant families could be processed instead.
CBP officials called the move -- from 10 lanes down to eight -- a temporary one, but they have not given a time frame for them to re-open.

A member the Mexican Trucking Association known as CANACAR who said he met with CBP officials Tuesday. He said they told him to expect at least another 3-4 weeks of long lines. He told 10News that it hasn't been this bad in the 35 years he's been in the trucking business.

The Otay Mesa Chamber of Commerce says lane closures are having an impact on manufacturers who are sometimes fined for late deliveries.

Alejandra Mier y Teran said eventually those costs will get passed on to consumers.

She said roughly 30 percent of commercial trucks haven't been able to cross at all in recent days due to lanes being limited or closing altogether after hours.