News & Politics

Illegal Immigrant Deaths Soar During Heat Wave

AP Photo/Gregory Bull

The Heat Is On

With the heat rising, more illegal immigrants are dying as they attempt to cross the border, usually of dehydration and sometimes of hypothermia.

Preliminary numbers obtained by Jaeson Jones, host of Tripwires & Triggers, tell us there have been 109 bodies of illegal immigrants found in June, up from 61 in May. The stats come directly from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). That brings the total for fiscal year 2021 to 321 bodies discovered by CBP–and there are three months to go. No one has an estimate of how many others die and are never discovered.

In the Heat of the Night

Illegal immigrants frequently traverse through desert and ranchland to avoid detection by CBP. The Rio Grande Valley sector in southern Texas and Arizona’s Tucson sector account for most of the summer deaths, which generally spike in tandem with illegal crossing numbers. Over the past 20 years, the highest number of deaths recorded by CBP was 492, in fiscal year 2005, and the lowest was 251 deaths in 2015.

“To avoid death or injury from severe dehydration, a person walking across the landscape in the heat of summer must consume no less than two gallons of water per day,” CBP stated on July 1. “The average person cannot carry sufficient water to avoid life-threatening dehydration over the course of several days in the brush.” Some people crossing the Rio Grande drown.

Finding water is hard and getting lost is easy. Also, smugglers, referred to as “coyotes,” will leave illegal immigrants behind in the desert if they’re slow or injured.

Deputy Sheriff Don White’s main focus in Brooks County, Texas, is to find the bodies of dead immigrants. Brooks County is about 70 miles north of the U.S.–Mexico border. It’s also where a lot of bodies are found.

Sherriff White recovered 15 bodies in June. So far this year, the county has found 52, a substantive increase over 2020, when 34 bodies were recovered over the whole year.

“June was a cool month with lots of rain,” Sheriff White told the Epoch Times on July 11. “July and August will be the worst for heat, and it’s quite possible that the 52 recoveries we have so far may dramatically increase.”

White, who runs the nonprofit Remote Wildlands Search and Recovery, said the body count would be “considerably higher than it is now” if it wasn’t for the CBP EMTs’ quick response to 911 calls.

Way to Go, Biden

In May 2021, CBP conducted 7,084 rescues along the border. The agency has rescued 35 percent more illegal immigrants thus far in the current fiscal year than in all of fiscal 2020.

From October 2020 to May 2021, Border Patrol snagged roughly 1 million illegal aliens, according to CBP.

Related: Why Is the Biden Administration Still Seizing Land for a Border Wall if He’s Not Going to Build It?

Other Dangers

Death by dehydration isn’t the only tragedy awaiting illegal immigrants. Filthy border conditions and sexual abuse by coyotes and other illegal immigrants are just two of the perilous obstacles people face, usually women and children, as they try to take up Biden on his invitation to storm our southern border.