The massive wall that straddles the border between the United States and Mexico has been breached thousands of times recently, according to Washington Post. The newspaper obtained unpublished records from documents from US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), which showed that the wall was breached 3,272 times in the past three years.
The records were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, the Post said. The breaches were a result of Mexican smuggling gangs sawing through new segments of the border wall, the document showed.
The records further showed that the US government spent a whopping $2.6 million to repair the breaches during the 2019 to 2021 fiscal years.
According to CBP records, the damage has been more widespread than previously known, pointing to the structure’s limitations as an impediment to illegal crossings, said the Post.
Former US President Donald Trump constructed over 800 kilometres of border wall from 2019, which he called “big and beautiful” and “Rolls Royce of barriers”. But the smugglers used inexpensive tools such as angle grinders and demolition saws to cut the barrier.
“No structure is impenetrable, so we will continue to work to focus resources on modern, effective border management measures to improve safety and security,” CBP spokesman Luis Miranda said in a statement.
The smugglers severed the bollards near the ground, which caused them to swing open with a push, allowing people and narcotics to pass through.
The Washington Post said that a 40-kilometre stretch of wall had 71 bollards with visible repairs and welds.
The report is yet another embarrassment for Trump. In August last year, portions of the wall washed away by floods that ripped through Arizona.
The photos of the damage to the structure were widely shared on the social media.
Trump famously made the construction of a wall along the US-Mexico border a plank of his administration, though much of the 452 miles (727 kilometres) he managed to build over his four-year term was replacing existing barriers.
The work was halted when Biden took office in January this year.