NIAGARA FALLS, NY – Initial reports of a suspected terrorist attack at the U.S.-Canada border have been refuted, with authorities now attributing the deadly incident to a reckless driver. The event, which occurred on Wednesday at the Rainbow Bridge crossing near Niagara Falls, involved a New York couple who died when their luxury vehicle crashed and exploded at the border checkpoint.
The 56-year-old male driver and his wife were residents of an affluent neighborhood. According to sources, the man had intended to attend a KISS concert in Canada. However, after the concert was canceled, he and his wife visited a U.S. casino. The crash happened after they left the casino.
The couple was traveling in a Bentley, valued at $300,000 post-tax, which hit a curb at the checkpoint at high speed. The impact launched the vehicle into the air, causing it to crash into a screening area and subsequently explode.
Initial reports suggested the presence of explosives in the car, sparking fears of a terrorist attack. However, the FBI’s Buffalo field office later announced that no explosives were found at the scene and there was no link to terrorism. The case has since been handed over to local police for a traffic investigation.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul reassured the public, stating, “At this time, there is no indication of a terrorist attack.” The identities of the couple have not been officially released as authorities await positive identification and notification of next of kin.
The incident was brought to the attention of the leaders of both the United States and Canada, who were briefed while the investigation was underway. The initial explosion caused security measures to be increased throughout the region, including the evacuation of local government offices on the U.S. side.
The Buffalo Niagara International Airport initially restricted international incoming and outgoing flights but later lifted the restriction, according to the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. All vehicles entering the airport were screened by bomb-detecting dogs, as per a spokesperson from the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority. Moreover, Amtrak temporarily paused a section of its cross-border route that connects New York and Toronto.
The incident also led to a temporary closure of all four bridges between Canada and the U.S. near Niagara Falls on one of the busiest travel days of the year. The Rainbow Bridge remained closed overnight but reopened on Thursday evening.