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Rainbow Bridge between US, Canada closed following deadly vehicle explosion

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(NEW YORK) — Two people were killed when a vehicle exploded Friday on the U.S. side of the Rainbow Bridge, which connects the U.S. to Canada at Niagara Falls, New York, according to sources.

The Rainbow Bridge has closed in the wake of the incident.

The vehicle, believed to be a Mercedes, sped toward a border checkpoint at the U.S. side of the bridge and hit a concrete barrier, multiple sources briefed on the investigation told ABC News.

The impact sent the vehicle careening into the area where U.S.-bound cars are sent for secondary screening, sources said.

The vehicle burst into flames and exploded, sources said.

Investigators have found some sort of suitcase or briefcase on scene, sources told ABC News. They are treating it as a possible explosive device as a precaution and the bomb squad is handling the package.

Ron Rienas, GM of the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority, told ABC News all four Canada-U.S. bridges over the Niagara River have been closed out of an abundance of caution while the Rainbow Bridge investigation continues.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said, “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. I am traveling to Buffalo to meet with law enforcement and emergency responders and will update New Yorkers when more information becomes available.”

The Buffalo Niagara International Airport said it’ll be increasing security, with car checks and additional screenings for travelers.

President Joe Biden has been briefed on the explosion and is closely following developments, according to the White House.

“We are taking this extraordinarily seriously,” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. “We are following up to try and get as many answers as rapidly as possible. … Additional measures are being contemplated and activated at all border crossings across the country.”

In Toronto, the police department said it’s increasing patrols out of an abundance of caution.

In New York City, Mayor Eric Adams said he’s also monitoring the incident.

Adams said the NYPD has already enhanced security for Thanksgiving “so the public will see increased security at locations across New York City, including entry and egress points into and out of the city.”

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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