Friday, July 29, 2011

For workers on the Rio Grande, caution follows close calls

Typically, men will cross the river and tell irrigation district workers to leave or stop clearing brush that provides cover for drug smuggling and illegal immigration. They occasionally steal equipment and threaten employees. Managers tell workers to simply walk away if threatened. It’s the safest course of action, but one that potentially exposes critical infrastructure to cartel operatives. Perhaps the most serious incident happened three weeks ago, when workers repairing a water pump near Hidalgo reported that someone shot at them from Mexico. Luckily, the men escaped unharmed. In response, Brand said District 3 will pay for field employees to take concealed handgun license classes and carry firearms on the job...more

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