As Hurricane Isaac approaches the Louisiana coast, CBP has opened emergency operations centers at headquarters and at locations in the expected path of the storm. The agency has activated its Lead Field Coordinator, CBP's senior executive in the field who is responsible for coordinating CBP's response to a natural disaster or incident of national significance.
"This hurricane has the potential to cause significant damage and we are taking this very seriously," said Acting Commissioner David V. Aguilar. "CBP's personnel are on standby to support local, state and federal requests for assistance."
CBP components, including the Office of Field Operations, Office of Air and Marine and U.S. Border Patrol, are being coordinated through a single incident command located near the effected area.
Members of trade community can monitor CBP.gov for updates on CBP's efforts to ensure that any disruptions are minimized. (CBP.gov) CBP will also post updates on CBP.gov for travelers on the status of CBP operations at various ports of entry.
There will be no immigration enforcement initiatives associated with evacuations or sheltering related to Hurricane Isaac, including the use of checkpoints for immigration enforcement purposes in impacted areas during an evacuation. (Message Regarding Hurricane Isaac)
In addition to the agency's primary mission, CBP supports the Federal Emergency Management Agency who coordinates the federal government's response to disasters.
CBP aircraft have supported emergency managers by providing video feeds of effected areas and airlifting emergency responders, food, water and first aid equipment to those in need. CBP personnel, including Border Patrol agents, Air and Marine agents and officers from the Office of Field Operations have also supported federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in their search and rescue and public safety efforts following a disaster.
Those in the effected area are encouraged to monitor local media and forecasts from the National Weather Service. (National Weather Service) Information on how to prepare for disaster can be found at FEMA.gov and Ready.gov. (FEMA.gov) (Ready.gov)
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.