People are climbing over Trump’s $15 billion border wall with $5 ladders

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A man carries a ladder in order to view the border-wall prototypes under construction, looking from Tijuana, Mexico, in October 2017. Getty
  • The US-Mexico border wall is regularly breached using homemade ladders, according to a report.

  • Border Patrol officials regularly find discarded ladders beside the wall, the report says.

  • The ladders are "defeating a wall that cost $12 million a mile," one activist told Texas Monthly.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

Related: Inside the Border Patrol facilities holding migrant children in TX

People are using $5 ladders to climb over sections of the $15 billion southern border wall built under former President Donald Trump's administration, Texas Monthly reported.

US Border Patrol officials who monitor the wall, which has been built along parts of the US-Mexico border, frequently find discarded ladders left by unauthorized migrants crossing into southern Texas along certain parts of the wall, the report said.

The Texas Monthly report cited Scott Nicol, an activist and Texas resident, who said, "These ladders are probably $5 worth of hardware, and they're defeating a wall that cost $12 million a mile in that location."

He added: "Unlike the wall, these ladders are functional."

Trump's pledge to build a wall was one of his central campaign promises in 2016. There have been multiple reports since then that migrants are able to climb parts of the wall and scale down the other side.

A viral video published in 2019 showed a person who had scaled the wall using a ladder then sliding down the other side.

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The ladders, often made from scrap lumber, are reportedly common along the stretch of the wall between the Texas cities of Granjeno and Hidalgo, whereas rope ladders are more commonly used farther up the Rio Grande river.

Border Patrol agents reportedly drive their vehicles over the ladders to destroy them, tossing them into piles that have to be hauled off to landfills, Texas Monthly reported.

The stretch between Hidalgo and Granjeno was partially constructed under Trump and partially during Barack Obama's administration, Texas Monthly reported, with the cost of the Trump section of the wall reaching $27 million a mile.

Trump's pledge to build a complete 1,000-mile wall along the US-Mexico border was never finished, Insider's Tom Porter reported

He built 80 extra miles of wall during his presidency and much of his presidency was spent reinforcing 400 miles of fences and barriers that had been installed during previous administrations. 

He had pledged that Mexico would fund the work, but the estimated $15 billion in funding instead came from federal taxes.

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