MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – Over the past two days, US Border Patrol officials have responded to at least 16 migrant landings in the state, arresting 263 migrants, the agency said.
It’s a continuation of an unfortunate trend, with hundreds of people braving dangerous journeys in an attempt to reach South Florida.
On Friday, a boat carrying Cuban migrants capsized near Sugarloaf Key. Local 10 News’ cameras spotting two bodies being placed in a medical examiner van.
Then there was Saturday at Key Largo’s Ocean Reef Club, where hundreds of Haitian migrants came as.
Sky 10 captured the multi-agency response to get more than 200 people onto a Coast Guard cutter, in addition to the 113 that came ashore.
According to Border Patrol, the smugglers who keep coming to South Florida have no regard for the human lives on board their boats.
“They don’t bring enough water, the vessel was overloaded, the weather changes frequently,” said Adam Hoffner with US Border Patrol Miami Sector. “(It’s) fortunate there were no serious injuries.”
Back in March, 365 Haitian migrants packed on a boat also made their way to Ocean Reef on Key Largo.
Mary Estime-Irvin with the National Haitian Elected Officials Network said this is a cry for help due to Haiti not having a political system or structure, which is the reason many Haitians are risking their lives.
“If there is instability in Haiti, there is always going to be this crisis, and as you can see people are willing to risk their lives,” she said during an appearance Sunday morning on This Week in South Florida.
Estime-Irvin added that she would like to see any migrants that make it here safely be given the opportunity to stay and seek asylum.
“We have to open up our hearts, we have to realize that we need to do something,” she said.