As security across US borders continues to tighten, smugglers have found it more difficult to get drugs across the US border. The Drug cartels have now found an ingenious way to make their deliveries across the US border by turning to technology, in the form of delivery drones -- according to Fox News reports.

Drones were not a viable option to drug cartels due to their limited load carrying ability. The first drones out of the assembly line were light, fragile, and only had space for a camera. But technological advances have changed that shortcoming as they are now built larger and can carry heavier loads. In fact, there are commercial delivery drones now available on the market that can take a load or drugs to a preset GPS location, eliminating the need for a remote control.

These drones have become extremely popular with smugglers.

New trend worries authorities

With no technology available to US Border Patrol or legislation to guide them on how to tackle the new trend by cartels, authorities are now worried, frustrated, and feel like they are playing catch-up to the tech-savvy cartels. Brandon Judd, who is the president of the National Border Patrol Council and an agent, confirmed that currently, Border Patrol does not have the technology to counter the drug delivering drones. Of more concern is that the drone numbers spotted delivering drugs across the border, with San Diego being the favorite border crossing, are increasing every day. In November 2017, a total of 13 drones were seen.

Speaking to the Washington Times, Christopher J. Harris, who is a Border Patrol agent and secretary of the local 1613 NBP Council, appealed to lawmakers in DC to give Border Patrol agents the tools needed to continue to effectively safeguard the US border.

Drones as smuggling tools

In August last year, a US citizen was arrested for flying a drone across the border and claimed he had successfully managed around five to six deliveries prior to his arrest.

The drone had the ability to carry up to 33 pounds worth of drugs. Border Patrol now urgently need technology to detect the low-flying drones and a law to give the agents the authority to counter the drone threat, within the confines of the law.

A detection system called Tethered Aerostat Radar System (TARS), which was introduced, proved ineffective due to its high visibility and limited range.

Cartels soon found a way around it by moving their drones outside the detection range of the system. In November, Rep. Vicky Hartzler proposed a potential bill that would give Border Patrol and Federal agencies the authority to track and disrupt the smuggling drones. The bill has yet to see the light of day.

In the meantime, drones continue to increase in number and deliver their potent cargo.