Tropical Storm Disrupts Border Traffic
September 01, 1998
Truck traffic crossing into the United States from Mexico had to be rerouted last weekend after remnants of Tropical Storm Charley flooded the Rio Grande and forced the closing of the three bridges in Laredo, TX, earlier in the week.
Although Laredo’s two downtown bridges reopened to passenger vehicles and southbound cargo traffic by Friday, the crossing used by U.S.-bound truckers will remain closed this week.
Water tore away security fences, destroyed light posts and buckled pavement at the U.S. Customs Service import lot at International Bridge No. 2 last Wednesday. Inspectors’ kiosks were still packed with water and mud Saturday. Just a few blocks north, International Bridge No. 1 was undamaged. It handles only southbound cargo traffic, as well as pedestrians and passenger vehicles in both directions.
Trucks from Mexico were routed to the Columbia Solidarity Bridge, 28 miles further north. Columbia usually handles no more than 2,600 northbound truck crossings a day. The number surged to 3,900 after the flood.