The Border Patrol Station in Maida is one of 16 such facilities in North Dakota that are operated by the Customs Border Protection (CBP) Division of the Department of Homeland Security. It is located where North Dakota Highway 1 intersects the Canadian border. The sister facility of Windygates sits just over the border in Canada.
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The previous, antiquated Maida border station that dated to1961 was replaced in 2012 with a new, expanded facility with cutting-edge technology such as a radiation monitor. This 5300 square foot station improves both security and conditions for travelers crossing at this border location.
The Role of Border Patrol Agents in Maida
With the terrorist attacks of 9/11 came a realization that the northern border of the U.S. was porous. Since then, the Department of Homeland Security has increased the number of Border Patrol agents across the border with Canada by over 600% in an effort to increase the security of the U.S. populace.
The jobs of the Border Patrol agents in Maida involve monitoring the traffic across the U.S. border to detect potential terrorists or other violent criminals, drug smuggling, those who are attempting to enter the U.S. illegally, and agricultural goods that are prohibited from being brought into the country. Detecting such intrusions is a primary goal of the Department of Homeland Security for those who are stationed at the northern border.
There are no known cases of terrorists crossing the border from Canada, although suspects have been arrested. In contrast, smuggling across the border has been a serious issue since the days of Prohibition when copious quantities of alcohol were illegally brought into the country from Canada. In the current climate, the smuggling of drugs is the serious issue. Both MDMA (Ecstasy) and high potency marijuana cross the border from Canada into the U.S. Border Patrol agents are pivotal in limiting the smuggling of drugs across the border.
The transfer of illegal immigrants into the country is another issue of great concern along the northern border. This has been an issue for both the U.S. and Canada, and both countries implemented new policies in 2008 that are enforced by Border Patrol agents at Maida. People attempting to enter either country are required to present both a photo ID and proof of citizenship. This policy has made it easier to detect those who are attempting to cross into the country illegally and has resulted in an improvement in safety for U.S. citizens.
Although less of an immediate threat, the potential importation of pathogens and pests on agricultural products is of serious concern to U.S. agricultural producers. Agricultural specialists at the border help to prevent this scenario by closely monitoring the importation of vegetables, fruit, and meat products into the U.S.