More than 20,000 people were ordered to leave their homes in the west German city of Dortmund Sunday while authorities prepare to diffuse a 4,000-pound bomb dating back to World War II.
The bomb was found by experts, who analyzed old aerial photographs while searching for the unexploded ordnance dropped by Allied aircraft over the Ruhr region during WWII.
These unexploded bombs are regularly found in Germany, but they’re usually not this big prompting authorities to extend an evacuation zone around the site to a 1.5 kilometer radius.
The evacuation was organized Sunday morning by police, fire brigade, 1,200 personnel from the city administration, and aid organizations.
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Authorities expect the bomb to be diffused this afternoon, by 3:30 p.m. (2:30 p.m. GMT).
Zoos and parks are offering concessions or free admission to citizens in the meantime.
Two years ago a similar bomb was found in Koblenz on the Rhine River, forcing 45,000 to evacuate.