Palominas residents stranded again, wash destroyed by monsoon storms

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Palominas residents stranded again, wash destroyed by monsoon storms

By Cory Marshall. CREATED Jul 14, 2014

PALOMINAS, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - It was this time last year, strong monsoon storms destroyed the only way in and out for residents living along South Paloma Trail in Palominas. After waiting all that time for a fix, it took days for rains to wash it all away. Now, residents say they are hoping for a more permanent solution.

"Yeah, I'm absolutely exhausted from it already," Palominas resident Lissa Howe told 9OYS.

Last year, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said they would work with residents toward a fix. The rural road is not county responsibility but it is used regularly by border patrol. In fact, it's the only access point from highway 92 to the border. The "fix" worked for a week. Then, on Saturday, rains once again rolled through and washed it out.

"My biggest concern is the lack of access by the border patrol to this area opens it up to foot traffic and maybe I'm saying that on television but it isn't anything they don't already know," Howe continued.

Rancher John Ladd has been here before. He's opened up his private ranch land to residents as an alternate route to town. What use to take one-and-a-half hours round trip, residents say, is now a four-hour detour.

"The small picture is there's a handful of families that are stranded, the big picture is we have 10.5 miles between the border, Naco and the river. It's a big smuggling area," Ladd said. "Border Patrol put some time and effort into it but it wasn't what we thought we would get."

A CBP spokesperson tells 9OYS they are working on getting an answer.