CBP Installs New Kiosks, Creates Ready Lane for Faster Border Crossings in Downtown Calexico
CALEXICO, CALIF.—U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials have installed six new kiosks to read border crossing documents and are now operating a pedestrian Ready Lane at the Calexico downtown port of entry.
The six kiosks, in use at each of the six pedestrian processing stations at Calexico West, are designed to help facilitate faster border crossings by allowing travelers to scan their own border crossing documents before even reaching the CBP officer assigned to their inspection. This will save time compared to having the CBP officer manually swipe each document as it is presented to them.
For even faster processing, CBP is leveraging existing Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology with the new pedestrian Ready Lane, which will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Similar to the existing vehicle Ready Lanes at Calexico's east port of entry, any traveler with an approved document that has RFID technology can use the new pedestrian Ready Lane.
Documents that may be used in the Ready Lane are: the U.S. passport card, Trusted Traveler cards (SENTRI/FAST/Global Entry) and the newer versions of the legal permanent resident and laser visa/border crossing cards issued after 2008. All travelers over 16 years of age must possess an RFID-enabled card to use the lane. Travelers eligible to use the pedestrian Ready Lane will approach the facility from the left, in a separate line from general travelers with non-Ready Lane documents.
"At CBP, we are committed to continuing to find ways to make our border safer and more efficient," said Pete Flores, director of field operations in San Diego. "We are working to leverage existing technology to shorten processing times for travelers crossing the border on foot."
When a traveler approaches the kiosk they will scan their document, allowing it to be read electronically before they approach the inspection booth. This allows the CBP officer to receive the traveler's information in advance, allowing for faster processing while enhancing overall security.
CBP officers need real-time access to a traveler's information to make a rapid and thorough admissibility decision. By receiving the information in advance after the traveler scans their own document at the kiosk, the CBP officer can focus on the individual instead, improving officer safety and allowing for faster processing. Using RFID technology allows for even more efficient processing using the new kiosks. At the pedestrian Ready Lane in Brownsville, Texas, CBP officers are able to process travelers about 10 seconds faster than travelers in general lanes.
Since the pedestrian Ready Lane at Calexico's downtown border crossing opened on Wednesday, May 15, two-thirds of pedestrian travelers are using the Ready Lane. Wait times for Ready Lane travelers are almost half that of wait times for regular travelers.
CBP continues to strongly encourage travelers to obtain RFID-enabled travel documents to expedite their entry to the U.S. and to help make the border crossing process more efficient. Travelers who have one of the RFID-enabled secure travel documents may use both the new pedestrian Ready Lane at downtown Calexico and the existing vehicle Ready Lane at Calexico East.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.