Wicker Questions Drone Flight Restriction at Mexican Border
September 17, 2021
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, today sent a letter requesting Federal Aviation Administrator (FAA) Steve Dickson to explain the implementation of the two-week Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) over the international bridge into Del Rio, Texas, and to promptly process any waiver sought by the media to ensure that the First Amendment is protected.
Click here or read the letter below:
Dear Administrator Dickson:
The worsening situation on our southern border is a crisis that requires the Biden Administration’s attention. Reports suggest that the number of migrants waiting to cross the international bridge into Del Rio, Texas, has swollen precipitously in recent days, underscoring the urgent need for the Administration to respond by securing our border.
Disconcerting images showing thousands of migrants waiting under the bridge surfaced on September 16, 2021. I understand that the FAA on the same day implemented a two-week TFR over the area at the request of Customs and Border Protection, thus preventing drone imaging of the bridge by media outlets unless a waiver is granted.
To ensure that the First Amendment is protected, I expect that the FAA will promptly process any waiver sought by the media, which I understand is standard practice. Given the concerns raised by this matter, I request a briefing with an explanation for implementing this aviation restriction at the Mexican border.
I appreciate your attention to this issue.