Tire spikes plaguing Reynosa roadways

Homemade tire spike being used on Reynosa roadways // Photo via @XMEN2069 on Twitter

Drivers are facing a new challenge on Reynosa's busiest roadway: tire spikes.

Over past two weeks, unknown suspects have been throwing tire spikes one some of the busiest roadways.

Many Reynosa residents have had their tires explode or deflated by the star-shaped tire spikes.

A motive isn't clear but residents are using the #reynosafollow hashtag of social media network Twitter to report what's happening.

Busy Roadways

Among the affected roads are the western end of Boulevard Hidalgo and the Libramiento Monterrey-Matamoros.

On the busy Monterrey-Matmoros highway, tire spikes have been reported east of the Plaza Periferico shopping center and near the Chedraui supermarket.

Residents reported seeing stranded motorists pulled over at nearby gas stations with deflated tires.

The latest incident happened near the Cheadraui supermarket on the city's southside during Thursday morning rush hour traffic.

Mexican Officials

Federal police were seen collecting spikes from the roadway of the Libramiento Monterrey-Matamoros on Saturday afternoon.

Action 4 News contacted federal police and Mexico's Attorney General's Office in Reynosa about the traffic spikes.

Both agencies referred comment to Reynosa traffic police known as "Transito,' who did not immediately return a call for comment.

Border Patrol

Tire spikes were first reported as a problem in the Rio Grande Valley back in February 2010.

Drug smugglers used them to escape from Border Patrol or other law enforcement agencies in western Hidalgo County and Starr County.

But more often than not, the spikes ended up shredding the tires of innocent bystanders caught in the middle of the chase.

Border Patrol officials told Action 4 News on Thursday that the use of tire spikes appears to have eased in the Valley.

Valley Lawmaker

Texas State Rep. Aaron Pea (R-Edinburg) said that decrease on the American side of the border may be due to increased pressure on tire spikes.

Law enforcement officials mounted a public campaign against their use last year but Pea also filed a bill to make creating them and having them illegal.

Pea told Action 4 News that authorities believe the manufacturing of tire spikes, also known as caltrops, has moved south of the border.

"It's unfortunate that they're now being used in Reynosa, "Pea said. "The proliferation of caltrops is closely associated with drugs and drug cartels."

Pea said the tire spikes are used both a means of escape and anarchy causing anxiety among innocent civilians.

"It's a form or terrorism," Pea told Action 4 News. "They're being used to disrupt people's daily activities."