Around 70,000 people will be forced to leave their homes in Frankfurt Sunday so authorities can defuse unexploded ordnance from World War II, according to German media reports.
The British-made bomb, known in German as a “wohnblockknacker” (blockbuster), was discovered on a construction site on the Wismarer Strasse in the Western District. The bomb, known for its ability to obliterate whole streets, weighs around 1.8 metric tons and is approximately two meters in length, according to the Frankfurter Rundschau. The bomb, which contains about 1,400 kilograms of explosives, could devastate buildings roughly a mile away from the point of impact.
The planned evacuation will be one of the largest in Germany since the end of the war. A bomb identified as a blockbuster was found in Augsburg in December last year. More than 50,000 people had to be evacuated on Christmas Day, and until now, that was the largest evacuation in the post-war period.
During World War II, the Allies dropped 2.7 million bombs on Europe. Half were dropped on Germany, and an estimated 10 percent of those devices failed to detonate, according to Deutsche Welle.
The location of the bomb, known as a HC 4000, is guarded, and there “is currently no danger,” authorities revealed. “Due to the large size of the bomb, extensive evacuation measures must be taken,” police told reporters.
The legacy of the intense Allied bombing campaign against Nazi Germany continues to surface every now and again as unexploded bombs continue to be found around the country over seventy years after the conclusion of the war.
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