BFF-31 WWII bomb defused in Germany after 18,500 evacuated

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GERMANY-BOMB-WWII-EVACUATION

WWII bomb defused in Germany after 18,500 evacuated

FRANKFURT AM MAIN, Aug 26, 2018 (BSS/AFP) – A German bomb disposal team on
Sunday successfully defused an unexploded World War II bomb that had forced
the evacuation of 18,500 people in the city of Ludwigshafen.

The 500-kilogramme (1,100-pound) aerial bomb, thought to have been dropped
by American forces, was discovered during construction work earlier in the
week.

“Good news: the bomb has been defused! Citizens may return to their
homes,” the city of Ludwigshafen said on its official Twitter feed.

It also posted a picture of the freshly unearthed, corroded bomb, strapped
to a pallet before being removed from the area.

Authorities in the western city had ordered all those living within a
1,000-metre (0.6-mile) radius of the bomb site to leave their homes from
08:00 am (0600 GMT) as a precaution ahead of the defusing operation.

It took the bomb squad just over an hour to complete the delicate task,
and the all-clear was given shortly after 2:00 pm.

More than 70 years after the end of World War II, Germany remains littered
with unexploded ordnance, a legacy of the intense Allied bombing campaign
against Nazi Germany.

In the biggest post-war evacuation to date, some 60,000 Frankfurt
residents were evacuated last year so that an unexploded 1.8-tonne British
bomb dubbed the “blockbuster” could be defused.

In April, thousands had to clear an area around Berlin’s central railway
station after another British bomb was discovered on a building site.

Unexploded munitions have also complicated the work of firefighters this
summer, with forest fires sparked by a spell of hot, dry weather setting off
long-buried ordnance, causing small explosions on several occasions.

BSS/AFP/ARS/1958 hrs