North Dakota CBP Acts as First Responder in 4 Incidents
Fargo, N.D. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection has been first responders to four separate incidents in the past day to assist the Cass County Sheriff. CBP is operating under Emergency Support Function #13 which is tasked to assist federal, state, local, and tribal entities in and security matters when requested by the federal, state or tribal government. In North Dakota, this activity was authorized by a presidential disaster signed on April 7.
The first incident occurred just shortly after midnight on April 22 when a train derailed on the border of Cass and Barnes counties. First on the scene were two CBP officers who were able to secure the scene. Nobody was injured in the train derailment which left 15 railcars derailed.
The second call of the day came into the Tactical Operations Center at 1 p.m. asking for help with a sandbagging operation in Davenport, N.D. CBP responded with a 17- man team to help assist the North Dakota National Guard, Davenport Fire Department and Cass County Sheriff sandbag a residence that flood waters were quickly approaching. In less than two hours the CBP team was able to assist stacking over 1,500 sandbags to keep flood waters at bay.
The third call of the day came into the TOC at approximately 6 p.m. from a Fargo-Moorhead ambulance, seeking assistance to evacuate a gentleman who may have had a heart attack. Within one minute of the call, a joint CBP and Cass County Sheriff ATV team was dispatched to the scene to assist with getting the victim out.
"From the time we got the call to the time we had our ATV's off the trailer and down the road was less than seven minutes" said Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Jeff Cheney. "This is another great example of how CBP is assisting the Cass County Sheriff's office to help the people of North Dakota."
Once on the scene two Border Patrol agents were able to get their ATVs through the flooded streets and assist the paramedics. To get the victim out they had to lay the patient on the back of a CBP ATV and walk along the ATV through the flooded streets.
The patient was transported to the hospital where his condition is unknown.
The last call of the day came in just two minutes after the call for the ATV support from two CBP officers who were the first to arrive on the scene of a two car injury accident, in West Fargo. The officers took control of the accident and stabilized an injured passenger until paramedics could arrive.
The emergency declaration which CBP is working under provides direct federal assistance for emergency measures to save lives and protect property. Under the declaration, FEMA has brought in other federal agencies to perform several emergency support functions. As the lead agency for public safety and security, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms has assigned CBP to help conduct wellness checks, rescue operations and other services as requested by the State.
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.