Detroit-Windsor Tunnel closed for hours after bomb threat - KMSP-TV

Detroit-Windsor Tunnel closed for hours after bomb threat

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SkyFOX shows the Entrance to the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel closed to traffic. SkyFOX shows the Entrance to the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel closed to traffic.
SkyFOX shows border patrol vehicles blocking the tunnel entrance off Jefferson Avenue. SkyFOX shows border patrol vehicles blocking the tunnel entrance off Jefferson Avenue.
DETROIT (WJBK) -

A bomb threat closed the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel for a time Thursday.

At 1:00 p.m., an anonymous caller told Windsor Police a bomb was in place in the tunnel.  Authorities tracked the call and said it came from a Windsor pay phone booth.  What followed was a rapid international security launch.

"We received notification of a possible bomb threat in the Windsor-Detroit Tunnel.  At that time, both Windsor P.D. and Detroit P.D. were closing off and evacuating the tunnel for safety concerns.  Our standpoint for the Coast Guard was to set up a security zone on the river," said Captain Gabriel Settle.

The tunnel was closed to traffic.  Canine teams trained to sniff for bombs walked the entire length of the mile long tunnel.  At the same time, the U.S. Coast Guard secured the Detroit River over the tunnel.

"Things went very smoothly for the Coast Guard's aspect," Settle said.  "Paramount is safety and security on the waterways for the Coast Guard, and boater safety is the number one priority for us."

Closing the tunnel is rare.  It has not happened in recent memory.  Detroit and Windsor responded well to this threat.  A bomb did not turn up.  It was a challenge for everyone, law enforcement and civilians alike.

It also came at a very busy period.  During the bomb threat, the Coast Guard responded to five separate search and rescues for boats.  These can range from a boat taking on water or no fuel to a general call for a boater in distress.

"Whether it's a beautiful, sunny day, cold day, sleet, snow, Coast Guard will be out there saving and protecting," said Settle.

An international effort is now underway to find that anonymous caller.

The Ambassador Bridge handled double the daily amount of traffic.  The Bridge Company released a statement saying traffic flowed smoothly Thursday afternoon.  They cite the U.S. and Canada working together and U.S. Customs adding 15 extra checkpoints to help make traffic move quicker.

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