SAN LUIS, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - You can hardly tell there's anything wrong with the steel, except for a thin horizontal line about three feet off the ground. That's the "cut." And that is how human and drug smugglers are getting past a multi-billion dollar border wall.
"You cut out three bollards and remove that section and do whatever you're going to do, and then put it back in. And sometimes it's detected by border patrol, and most of the time it's not," said John Kurc, who is a photographer who documented border wall construction last year. Now he's documenting how people are getting through the wall.
"I'm going to call this situation what it is -- a crisis."
"When you have seen this, you know people are actually doing it. It really shows you just how easy this 15th-century technology is to circumvent," said Kurc.
Two weeks ago, Kurc recorded an exchange with the supervisor of a crew that was repairing a hole in the new wall.
"We've done 35 of them up in Naco in the last two weeks," said the man.
Customs and Border Protection officials believe an SUV drove through a break in the fence on March 2. Later that morning, that vehicle collided with a semi near Holtville, California, killing 13 people. Investigators believe there were at least 19 people in the SUV.
Smugglers are finding ways to get past the wall, as the number of migrants apprehended just north of the border increases every month.
According to statistics compiled by CPB, the number of migrants apprehended along the southwest border has steadily increased each month since last April.
In Arizona's Tucson sector, the number of migrants apprehended has also risen, despite the fact that most of Arizona's border with Mexico is lined with a new or replacement wall.