Frustration continues over long waits at Calexico Border

Frustration continues over long waits at Calexico Border

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CALEXICO - It's back to the same long lines and long waiting times for residents on both sides trying to cross the border.

City leaders called on the federal government to open more crossing lanes to ease traffic congestion.

Their calls went unheard until CBP opened more lanes on a limited basis.

The wait is so bad, hundreds of thousands of residents, like Benita Camacho are forced to wait in line, on most days, for up to three hours just to cross the border. For Camacho, the frustration has been growing over the last 45 years!

Camacho says that it is much worse in the summer. She has been crossing back-and-forth since she was 6 years old. Today, the mother of four says the long wait times are taking a toll on her body, especially when she has to sit in a car, waiting to cross when it's 110-plus degrees outside.

"During the summer, there we are, sweating, waiting for hours to get across", she says. "It is so heavy on us older people, but we have to do it. We have to come do our shopping and visit family".

For years now, city officials have steadily raised their voices, calling on the federal government to speed up the line by opening more lanes.

Customs and Border Protection finally answered their calls, and opened additional lanes during the holidays.

Today, for Camacho and all other residents who cross the border here everyday - it's back to normal; more complaining about the long lines and more calls for federal government to take action again.

"I think it would be great!", she says. "It would definitely make the process a lot faster but it would make a lot of people happy as well. I think we would all look forward to coming across".

I talked to several other residents who come across to shop and spend money here in the Imperial Valley. They tell me that if the waiting times continue, they'll think twice about coming across. That's exactly why local officials are once again calling on the federal government to keep the lanes open, so that the economic growth will keep flowing on this side of the border.

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