Skift Take

Hopefully no one else was hurt, and that this incident was an isolated event.

Authorities suspended international flights at one airport and closed four bridges between the U.S. and Canada in the Niagara Falls area following an incident where a vehicle crashed and exploded on impact on the Rainbow Bridge.

Two people in the car died on the Rainbow Bridge at the U.S.-Canada border crossing Wednesday. A U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer was injured.

The nature of the incident and whether or not it was terrorism-related, or something else, was under investigation.

Other international crossings are on heightened alert but are open, according to the New York State Government. One interstate highway was in the process of being closed.

The New York City Police Department will increase security at locations across New York City, including entry and egress points into and out of the city. Toronto Police said it will increase directed patrols of the city.

Buffalo-Niagara International Airport has suspended all international flights and is increasing its security. The airport website has told travelers to expect additional screening and security checks for cars and travelers. The airport has up to 100 nonstop flights per day serving 31 airport destinations and beyond.

“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,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul.

The danger of flight delays at one airport is that it has a domino effect on others across the U.S. aviation network. A plane leaving late from Buffalo may lead to multiple planes leaving late from Chicago.

Reports said the car was traveling on a local road in the U.S., headed toward a bridge checkpoint at perhaps 80-100 miles per hour, struck a curb and burst into flames when it crashed near a secondary security checkpoint.

The incident comes on the busiest day of the Thanksgiving travel period. In some metro areas, average travel times will be as high as 80% more than normal, according to INRIX, a transportation data provider.

This year will be one of the busiest Thanksgiving travel periods ever. Over 55 million Americans will be traveling for Thanksgiving between Wednesday and Sunday, according to AAA.


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Tags: airport security, canada, New York, niagara falls, tourism, tsa

Photo credit: Source: Catrina Carrigan on Unsplash Catrina Carrigan / Unsplash

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