US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Archived Content

In an effort to keep current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.

Rescue Beacon Helps Agents Save Man's Life

Release Date: 
March 9, 2012

FALFURRIAS, TEXAS—U.S. Border Patrol agents assigned to the Falfurrias Station saved the life of an illegal alien Thursday after the man became lost in the brush and activated a rescue beacon.

The rescue occurred when the agents received information the beacon had been activated and rapidly responded to the area. The man was offered medical attention, which he declined.

The Border Patrol has six rescue beacons strategically placed on ranches throughout the area in order to increase the likelihood of survival for individuals who fall victim to the harsh terrain or adverse weather. Once activated the beacons send out a distress signal that allows agents to locate the imperiled individual and provide first aid within minutes.

Although summertime is still a few months away, numerous illegal aliens are falling victim to the rising temperatures. So far in fiscal year 2012, Border Patrol agents in the Rio Grande Valley Sector have saved the lives of more than 100 illegal aliens, whose lives were in jeopardy due to a variety of circumstances.

Many illegal aliens smuggled into the United States are unaware of the extreme danger they face in regard to harsh environmental conditions. Additionally, they do not realize that they must often walk for several days with very little, if any, food and water.

"The diligence of our well-trained agents, combined with assets like our rescue beacons, significantly increases our ability to locate distressed individuals and save their lives," Chief Patrol Agent Rosendo Hinojosa said. "Unscrupulous human smugglers prey upon the desperation of undocumented aliens and often abandon them in remote locations. Border Patrol agents will continue to focus on rescue efforts and aggressively target alien smugglers."

To report suspicious activity, call the Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol Sector's toll-free telephone number at (800) 863-9382.

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021