Buffalo, N.Y. (WKBW release) -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection Field Operations on Tuesday announced a new initiative to expedite the entry of travelers possessing Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, Radio Frequency Identification technology-enabled travel documents at the Peace Bridge and Rainbow Bridge ports of entry.
Since the implementation of WHTI, travelers have been required to present secure travel documents that denote citizenship and identity when entering or re-entering the United States from within the Western Hemisphere.
As of August 22, 2011, CBP has dedicated a separate or "Ready Lane" at the Peace Bridge and Rainbow Bridge ports of entry for travelers entering the U.S. with a RFID-enabled card.
These documents include:
* Trusted Traveler cards such as NEXUS, SENTRI or FAST cards
* Enhanced Driver's Licenses (EDL) or Enhanced Identification Card
* U.S. Passport Cards
* New Permanent Resident Cards
The new Ready Lane at the Peace Bridge is open from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m., and Rainbow Bridge from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. The Ready Lane is operational Monday through Thursday at each location. CBP will monitor the success of the lane and may expand the hours of operation as needed to meet the demand for usage. The CBP border wait time web site has been updated to inform travelers of the specific lane number at each Bridge used for the Ready Lane. http://apps.cbp.gov/bwt/
In order to use this dedicated lane, all adult passengers, over the age of 16, must present one of the approved RFID-enabled travel cards.
Travelers using the Ready Lane are reminded of three simple steps to follow as they approach a U.S. land port of entry with their RFID-enabled travel card:
1. Stop at the beginning of the lane and prepare to slowly approach
the booth when clear.
2. With their travel cards removed from its protective sleeve,
passengers should hold them up, with the flat front face of the card toward a window on the driver's side. The RFID-enabled cards will be read automatically while the vehicle proceeds slowly to the inspection booth.
3. Stop at the inspection booth and be prepared to present the
cards for all travelers in the vehicle to the CBP Officer.
CBP continues to strongly encourage travelers to obtain RFID-enabled identification to expedite their entry and to help make the borders more efficient.
The WHTI upgrades, which include new software, hardware and the development of vicinity RFID secure technology, were implemented as part of the statutory mandates of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention ACT (IRTPA) of 2004. No personally identifiable information is stored on the RFID chip.