Ambassador Bridge, connects Windsor, Ontario, and Detroit, Michigan/AP
Detroit Free Press
DETROIT -- The Ambassador Bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, re-opened early Tuesday, said the U.S. Coast Guard.
The toll bridge resumed commercial and recreational traffic at 1 a.m. Tuesday, hours after a bomb threat brought traffic on both sides of the bridge to a standstill, Coast Guard Lt. Justin Westmiller said.
The bomb threat shut down the bridge Monday night, creating massive traffic backups for commuters and security headaches for authorities, the second time an international crossing between the cities has been threatened in the past week.
A man in Detroit called in the threat about 7:15 p.m., triggering the shutdown on both sides of the bridge, said Detroit Police Inspector Don Johnson Jr., who is in charge of homeland security.
"There is a bomb at the Ambassador Bridge scheduled to go off in 10 minutes," was what the man said, Johnson said.
Detroit police are working with various federal and local agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol. Specially trained K9s were brought in to scour for explosives, Johnson said.
"We take any threat very seriously and set in motion the security measures the bridge has had in place since 9/11," said Dan Stamper, president of the Detroit International Bridge Co. that operates the Ambassador Bridge.
On Thursday, a bomb threat at the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel shut down that crossing and caused traffic backups for hours. Agents scoured the tunnel for signs of explosives with the same K9s. Commuters were forced to make detours to the bridge. That threat was determined to be a hoax.
Some traffic Monday night was being rerouted to the tunnel, but semi-trailer trucks were lined up for blocks, too big to use the tunnel. Many commercial trucks can't clear the tunnel's 13-foot, 2-inch ceiling.
By 10:15 p.m., truck driver Matt Shellington, 43, had been waiting for two hours, trying to return to Paris, Ontario, where he lives, after dropping a load of industrial hoses off in metro Detroit.
"I don't get too excited," he said but did point out that he still had three hours to drive once across the bridge.
(Contributing: Tresa Baldas, Niraj Warikoo, Megha Satyanarayana and Gina Damron, Detroit Free Press)