A car explosion killed two people on Wednesday at the Rainbow cross-border bridge, which connects the United States and Canada, not far from Niagara Falls. An event which “appears to be an isolated incident”, according to the federal Minister of Public Safety, Dominic LeBlanc.
The Governor of New York State, Kathy Hochul, for her part told the press that there was “no evidence at this stage that this is a terrorist activity”. She spoke to the media late in the day about the “horrific explosion” on the American side of the bridge over the Niagara River. Mme Hochul also confirmed the death of the two passengers of the vehicle in question which “could have come from the surroundings” of a casino, according to his comments reported by CNN.
For his part, Mr. LeBlanc maintained, in an interview with RDI, that it seemed to be an “isolated incident”, but that a more in-depth investigation will be necessary to completely rule out the theory of an attack.
The vehicle initially accelerated before hitting a guardrail and exploding. An American law enforcement official cited by the New York Times however, indicated that the explosion seemed mainly to result from the collision of the car with the bridge infrastructure. According to the same source, a suitcase was found near the vehicle, but it did not contain any explosive material.
Access to the Rainbow Bridge was prohibited until further notice Wednesday evening. The region’s three other cross-border bridges — the Lewiston, Whirlpool and Peace bridges — were reopened late in the day after being closed by authorities following the incident.
Earlier in the day before the press briefing by the governor of New York, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau maintained, in front of Parliament, that this was a “clearly very serious” event. “There are still a lot of questions and we are trying to get answers as quickly as possible. » His office had specified that it was in contact with the American authorities.
The FBI is investigating
Around 1:15 p.m. Wednesday, the FBI office in Buffalo, located not far from the scene of the event, indicated on the social network X that it was looking into the incident. The American federal police said they were coordinating their actions with those “of their local, state and federal partners as part of this investigation”. “As the situation is very fluid, that’s all we can say for now,” she said at the time.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul said shortly after 1 p.m. that she had been informed of the incident and that she was “closely monitoring” developments. “I am traveling to Buffalo to meet with law enforcement and emergency responders and will keep the people of New York informed as new information becomes available,” she said at the time. on the social network.
With Agence France-Presse and the Associated Press