Thousands of People Evacuate Homes in Frankfurt, Germany Before WWII Bomb Defused

Thousands of People Evacuate Homes in Frankfurt, Germany Before WWII Bomb Defused

If the bomb isn't defused, it could cause an explosion big enough to flatten a city block... a threat severe enough to cause the largest post-war evacuation in Germany's history.

Homes and buildings within a 1.5-kilometre radius of the site were due to be cleared by 6am Irish time, but some people were still in the evacuation zone well past the deadline as police carried out door-to-door checks.

The device is a British bomb, specifically a 1.4-ton HC 4000 air mine, the statement said.

Premature babies and intensive care patients had to be evacuated along with everyone else from two hospitals and rescue workers helped about 500 elderly people leave residences and care homes. More than 100 patients in healthcare establishments, including newborn infants, have been evacuated, municipal councilor Markus Frank said.

Bomb technicians had been scheduled to begin work shortly after noon, but the fire department said there were delays as some people refused to leave.

"The situation is relaxed which is a good sign and everything so far is going according to plan. People who need assistance are being transported over the next few hours", Röck said. Others sat in cafes on the edge of the evacuation zone.




Three police explosives experts in Goettingen were killed in 2010 while preparing to defuse a 1,000 lb (450kg) bomb.

The brigade's director, Reinhard Ries, told reporters: "The scale of this bomb is overwhelming".

The two main shelters - at a convention center and a concert hall - can house up to 10,000 people, Röck told CNN.

"Not everyone has the opportunity to spend the day with friends or relatives".

Similar operations are still common 72 years after the war ended.

The massive bomb was discovered last week in a leafy suburb of the city; an area home to numerous city's wealthiest residents.

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