The U.S. Border Patrol Station in Zapata, Texas, has been in operation since October 1, 1990. On April 1, 2005, the Zapata Station was relocated from 2785 State Highway 83 to its present location on 105 Kennedy Street. Since 1990, the number of agents at the station has increased and its office spaces have expanded. In addition to more agents, the station has added an automotive mechanic, as well as more mission support, intelligence and maintenance personnel. Zapata Station has an experienced marine operations unit, and an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) unit was recently added to the station's arsenal.
Area of Responsibility
The Zapata Station's operational area of responsibility (AOR) is Zapata County, Texas, which consists of 939 square miles of land and 61 square miles of water. The station's operational AOR boundaries extend along the United States-Mexico border for a distance of approximately 75 miles. Dolores Creek and the Starr County line serve as the northern and southern boundaries on U.S. Highway 83. The eastern boundary is approximately 26 miles on State Highway 16 and Farm-To-Market Road 2687 to Jim Hogg County. The station's AOR also includes about 40 miles of Falcon Lake that extends from Zapata to the Falcon Dam along the border with Mexico. International boundary markers are located in the center of the river and the lake.
The agents' duties are multifaceted and include signcutting, linewatches, boat patrols, traffic observations, ATV patrols, tactical checkpoint operations, and city patrols. The agents also patrol Zapata County's urban areas and routinely perform transportation checks on two major bus lines that cross Zapata County. The Zapata Station's extensive ability to detect, deter and/or apprehend smugglers of humans, drugs, and terrorist threats compliments the National Border Patrol Strategy of securing America's borders.