A drone operated by a CBS 60 Minutes film crew crashed into a power line, forcing a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint to temporarily shut down screening operations. The accident also resulted in the loss of power to a small numbers of homes in the sparsely populated area.
The drone crash occurred in the northern part of Webb County, Texas, on Tuesday between Laredo and San Antonio. Officials stated the crash happened near the checkpoint operated by Border Patrol agents used to interdict drug and human smuggling operations, KGNS reported.
Breitbart Texas confirmed with U.S. Border Patrol officials that a CBS 60 Minutes film crew was working near the checkpoint in coordination with a Border Patrol agent assigned by the Laredo Sector communications office. During the filming, the pilot accidentally struck the power line causing the loss of power.
Border Patrol public information officer Sara Melendez told Breitbart Texas the drone pilot was properly licensed and accidentally contacted the wires with the drone. The power outage lasted about two hours.
Melendez said the CBS crew was filming a report on border security for a future episode.
During the outage, DPS troopers were called in to assist with traffic control around the busy Border Patrol checkpoint. The crash forced Border Patrol agents to shut down their inspection operations until power could be restored. Officials reported this is the first time a Border Patrol checkpoint has been forced to halt operations because of a drone induced power outage, KGNS reported.
While the checkpoint was closed, Border Patrol agents conducted traffic stops with roving patrols to continue routine inspections. The checkpoint was closed from about 8:30 Tuesday morning until 10:30 a.m.
There were no reported injuries or other reports of damage from the crash.
Border Patrol agents are reportedly conducting an investigation into the crash and resulting power outage.
Editor’s Note: This article has been updated with new information from Border Patrol officials.
Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior political news contributor for Breitbart Texas. He is a founding member of the Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX, Gab, and Facebook.