By Neelam Rahim
The bodies of nine migrants attempting to cross the Rio Grande on Thursday were recovered by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Mexican authorities, in line with an announcement shared with The Texas Tribune.
According to The Associated Press, dozens were swept downstream while attempting to cross the river near Eagle Pass, where the river rose over two feet in a few days.
“Border Patrol agents are coordinating with the Eagle Pass fire department and Maverick County Sheriff’s Office as the search continues for other possible victims,” said Cecilia Barreda, a CBP spokesperson, during a statement.
According to a press release from the U.S. agency, CBP located six bodies, and the Mexican authorities recovered three victims near Eagle pass on Thursday. The river’s swelling came after months of minimal precipitation, followed by heavy rains, which caused a sudden surge in flow.
The National Weather Service told the AP that the river flowed five times faster than usual.
CBP personnel and patrol agents rescued 37 people within the river and detained 16 others, in line with the statement. Mexican authorities arrested 39 migrants on the southern side of the river.
The past few months have seen many migrants dying while crossing the southern border. In June, 51 migrants died after being trapped in a tractor-trailer. Thursday’s drownings were among the deadliest along the U.S.-Mexico border.