It appears that an American checkpoint between Canada and the United States in Buffalo, New York, has been attacked, following reports of an explosion at a checkpoint on the Rainbow Bridge near Niagra Falls.
BREAKING: Security camera footage shows the car bombing at the U.S.-Canadian border in Niagara Falls pic.twitter.com/H83XiXq8J1
— True Street Media (@truestreetmedia) November 22, 2023
A car has exploded at the entrance plaza for the Rainbow bridge which connects the U.S. and Canada at Niagara Falls, New York.
Recall just yesterday the FBI had issued an increased potential of terrorist attacks in New York state. pic.twitter.com/BRRZqyO3Cx
— Justin Hart (@justin_hart) November 22, 2023
Earlier reports are describing the scene as a “vehicle explosion.”
The Niagra Gazette said that “the car reportedly sped the wrong way into the inspection booths, where the explosion occurred.
Patrol cars representing multiple local police agencies, including the Niagara Falls Police Department and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, are on the scene following the incident that witnesses told the Niagara Gazette occurred at around 11:20 a.m. Wednesday.
A captain with the Niagara Falls Police Department who was directing motorists and pedestrians near the inspections plaza at the intersection of Niagara Street and Rainbow Boulevard said he could not comment on the situation before telling a reporter that he should leave the area because it was a “dangerous situation.”
Two witnesses who were present in the area when the incident happened told the Gazette that they heard a loud noise that sounded like an explosion and saw a large cloud of smoke near the inspections station on Wednesday morning shortly before police arrived on the scene.
Authorities have announced that all international border crossings in the area have been closed.
“At my direction, the New York State Police is actively working with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force to monitor all points of entry to New York,” the New York Governor Kathy Hochul said.
The FBI’s statement announced that it’s coordinating the investigation with local, state and federal law enforcement. “As this situation is very fluid, that’s all we can say at this time,” the FBI said.
The Rainbow Bridge connects the cities of Niagara Falls, USA and Niagara Falls, Canada. The bridge is located less than a mile from the world-renowned waterfalls and offers a view of one of North America’s natural wonders.
“The Peace Bridge, Lewiston-Queenston Bridge, Whirlpool Bridge, and Rainbow Bridge are all closed in both directions,” general manager of the Peace Bridge, Ron Reinas told local news covering the incident.
The City of Niagara Falls said federal authorities are investigating the situation.
The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel days of the year and when the international crossings see their highest daily traffic count for the month of November.
This is breaking news and the situation is still being updated.